New mixtures offer innovation

New mixtures offer innovation

Monday, February 14, 2011

Mixtures specifically designed for a range of specialist circumstances feature in the new BAR Forage catalogue, in addition to a comprehensive offering of strong performing mixtures, says Barenbrug UK. 

Patching, especially designed to repair damaged and poached areas, is the newest addition to the BARForage mixtures range, and benefits from fast establishment and an aggressive growth habit that enables it to outcompete seedling weeds, says the company. It aims to provide a rapid return to a productive ley and rapid repair of areas damaged or poached by livestock, such as gateways and around troughs.

Barenbrug has also introduced a new element to its line-up with its 'Innovations' programme, allowing farmers to try products and to broaden the experience with them, as part of product development. 

Agricultural product manager David Long says: "Innovations follows on from our extensive trials and on-farm testing. It's at this stage that we can now offer farmers the opportunity to experience the additional benefits of some really innovative forage products. With our dedicated research and development here and across Europe, we have a large portfolio waiting to help producers and it's an enormous advantage to get these out on farm and improve forage production still further."

The first of these Innovations is Proto Plus 1, which was originally developed by Barenbrug France as an answer to the problem of summer drought conditions in southern France and Iberia. In addition to producing valuable yields of high-protein forage, the product also fixes its own nitrogen, feeding the companion grass and leaving residual nitrogen for the following crop, says David. 

The second innovation is Proterra, developed by Barenbrug Holland and designed to be sown under winter cereals and increase the soil's organic matter in arable rotations. 

A further innovation is Protein Lamb Finisher resulting from trials run by AFBI at Loughgall in Northern Ireland, which were looking at 20 alternative forage protein crops. These included potential red clover varieties, lucernes and Commander chicory, which was sown by itself, mixed with perennial ryegrass and mixed with Lemmon red clover. 

When sown with Lemmon red clover, it consistently produced the highest yields for the duration of the trial, says David. "As chicory isn't a legume it cannot produce its own nitrogen, so needs a source of nitrogen to be able to maintain it high level of leaf production. By combining it with Lemmon red clover, another high protein forage, we created the ideal lamb finishing forage which has no need for nitrogen fertiliser and leaves a residue of nitrogen for the following crop. 

"When it was time for the on-farm trials we put the mixture under as much 'farming' pressure as possible. It was continuously and rotationally grazed. Despite the sward being relatively open it had no problem carrying relatively high stocking rates and continued to produce well through the extended dry periods of summer 2010." 

For full details of these Innovations and other BARForage mixtures available for 2011 call 01359 272000 or email info@baruk.co.uk to request your free catalogue. Alternatively, download a copy from http://www.barenbrug.co.uk/

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