The healthy and rapid development of animal husbandry is an important guarantee to meet people's demand for the quantity and quality of animal products, and is also an important topic for the development of modern grassland husbandry. With the rapid development of grassland animal husbandry more and more attention and favor have been paid to forage grass products. The processing form of forage grass products is developed from bulk, powdery to block (briquette) and pellet shape.
With the development of animal husbandry and feed processing industry in the world, the demand for forage grass is increasing day by day, but there are also higher requirements on the palatability, utilization rate, nutritional value, storage and processing of forage grass. Under this background, ordinary grass products (hay, bale, grass block, grass powder) are not able to meet market demand. Forage grass pellet products that have good palatability and can effectively improve the utilization rate and digestibility of forage grasses are widely favored by the market, and will be the main development direction of future forage grass products processing.
Advantages of forage grass pellets
Forage grass pellet is a kind of forage product which is formed by fully pulverized forage grass powder and added steam according to production requirements, fully mixed and pressed by the forage grass pellet making machine.
- The nutritional ingredients of forage pellet feed are more diversified to meet the nutritional needs of more kinds of livestock animals.
- It can increase the intake of ruminant livestock.
- Improving digestibility of forage pellet feed
- Reduce the intake time and reduce the physical energy consumption of livestock
- Small volume, convenient for transportation and storage.
- Effective prevention of mildew; can effectively reduce the loss in transportation.
Types of forage grass pellets
- Pure grass pellets: Such products are usually processed from a single variety of forage grass raw material into pellet feed, such as Leymus chinensis pellet feed, alfalfa pellet feed and so on. The advantages of this kind of products are single raw material, simple production process, strong operability; but the shortcomings of pellet feed nutrients are limited by raw materials, cannot be diversified.
- Mixed forage grass pellet feed: This kind of pellet feed is based on two or more kinds of raw materials, which is produced by a suitable proportion, such as the mixed pellet feed of Leymus chinensis and concentrate feed, the mixed pellet feed of alfalfa and caragana, the mixed pellet feed of alfalfa and straw, etc. Their advantages are to diversify the nutrition of pellet feed. It can effectively utilize forage resources and solve an effective way of insufficient forage yield in some areas.
- Special forage pellet feed: This kind of feed is produced according to the different nutritional requirements of different livestock and livestock at different stages of development. This kind of feed can make nutrition more perfect; livestock can absorb more easily and effectively improve the utilization of feed. This kind of special mixed feed is very popular in the market and will be the main direction of forage pellet feed development in the future.
Processing technology of forage pellets
- The most critical technology for processing forage grass pellets is to regulate the moisture content of raw materials. First, the water content of the raw material must be measured, and then the water should be added till the moisture content reaches the amount required for feed processing. The results showed that the optimum moisture content of legume forage was 14%-16%, and that of gramineous forage was 13%-15%.
- The forage grass pellets are usually processed with pellet feed machine. The forage powder is stirred and extruded during the rolling process. Under normal conditions, the temperature of the particles just coming out of the sieve hole is about 80℃. So they need to be cooled from high temperature to room temperature, the moisture content of the straw powder is generally reduced by 3% ~ 5%. Therefore, the moisture content of the forage grass pellets after cooling is less than 11% ~ 13%. As the water content is very low, it is suitable for long-term storage without moldy deterioration.
- Forage pellets can be processed according to the nutritional requirements of various livestock and poultry to prepare grass granules with different nutritional components. The pellet size can be adjusted by the pellet making machine and processed according to requirements.