Overcoming mineral deficiency in cows

02-11-2015 | |
Overcoming mineral deficiency in cows
Overcoming mineral deficiency in cows

Copper and zinc are essential minerals for livestock, but its bioavailability in ruminant diets can be variable. Trials confirmed that the organic version is preferable over the sulphate version of the mineral.

Several chemicals interfere with the absorption of copper, including iron, molybdenum and sulphur. A trial from 2008 looked at the effect of molybdenum on copper deficiency in beef cattle. 60 beef steers were fed a diet (containing 0.15% sulphur and 2 ppm molybdenum for all), supplemented with copper from either copper sulphate or a bioavailable copper*. Numerically higher copper levels were found in the plasma and liver of the steers fed the diet supplemented the bioavalalaible copper and a significantly higher level of ceruloplasmin (P = 0.01). After molybdenum in the diet for all steers was increased to 6 ppm for 28 days, all copper levels for the steers supplemented with the bioavailable copper were significantly different (P = 0.01).

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Decreased infection level

The difference between different zinc supplements was shown by different trials. A trial from 2004 showed a higher bioavailability of zinc from a zinc glycinate complex**, compared to zinc from zinc sulphate. In a different trial, the North Carolina State University concluded that this zinc glycinate complex had a positive effect on immune parameters, based on a study with 102 beef steers. This conclusion was based on the haptoglobin levels. Haptoglobin is an acute phase protein, known to increase in case of infection. Starting from day 14, the haptoglobin levels were reduced for the animals fed 30 ppm zinc from the zinc glycinate complex, compared to the animals fed zinc sulphate, hence indicating a decrease of infection level. A better immune response was also confirmed in the growing phase of beef steers.

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Combination of minerals

Based on the knowledge of the above mentioned bioavailable mineral sources, the producer of these products (Pancosma) has expanded its range of organic trace minerals for ruminants. The latest addition is a combination*** of four essential minerals for ruminants. By using the iso-fusion technology, every particle of this mineral mix contains the minerals at the exact same ratio, for perfect distribution and homogeneity in premix and feed.


Source: Mieke Zoon, Pancosma

Emmy Koeleman Freelance editor