Sales at The Feed Mill here have increased 25 percent this year as a result of a focus on specialty premium show pig feeds and other specialty livestock feeds for 4-H and FFA members.
“Several years ago we realized that there was a need for premium feed to produce fast-growing show hogs, lambs and cattle for local fairs,” said Stacy Boston, feed mill manager.
So far students using the show pig feed and other specialty feeds have won numerous ribbons in local and state fairs.
State Fair Pig Grower, for example, has additional protein and fat, as well as extra chromium, lysine and several “secret” ingredients. The additional chromium and lysine enable an animal to digest a high-fat, high-protein feed properly.
Steve Wilder, an agriculture teacher at Meridian High School, worked with Boston to develop the special show pig feed.
“Stacy and The Feed Mill have been very helpful in modifying formulas to meet the changing needs of the swine industry locally,” he said. “Even though the swine industry in Idaho is declining, the pigs that are currently produced are very high quality and have higher nutritional requirements than in the past.”
Students drive from as far away as Mountain Home to purchase the show pig feed at the feed mill.
Feed product at the mill is all natural and is free from antibiotics, meat and bone meal, pesticides and urea. No meat is permitted on the premises, as herbivores such as poultry and horses are sensitive to meat contamination. All feed batches are mixed by hand from premium grains.
The Feed Mill, a seven-story local landmark, was constructed in the early 1900’s. It received a new coat of paint last year, with the maroon and gold color scheme selected to blend with the nearby Meridian City Hall.