The recent drought and dry summer experienced across the country has made its impact felt in the nutritional analysis of new crop cereals.

Premier Nutrition’s poultry team has recommended that poultry farmers, integrated poultry companies and feed compounders keep an eye on analysis updates for the 2018 harvest over the coming weeks.

Protein levels

Early indications show the dry summer has impacted protein levels – potentially requiring feed reformulations as further analyses emerge.

Higher protein levels can result from less moisture, particularly in lighter soils, and lower yields.

Initial NIR (near infra-red) analysis has revealed this in winter wheat, where yields have fallen below the five-year average of 8.2t/ha. Barley results are expected to show a similar trend.

Ian Mackinson, a nutritionist at the firm, has commented on the situation, noting: “Initial results undoubtedly confirm crops are drier than usual and show interesting early trends.

“We’ll be watching them closely and advising on how they need to be factored into formulation readjustments.”

Based on AHDB’s harvest reports, Premier Nutrition’s nutritionists produce a series of updates during September with a final report in October.

These reports apparently offer a specialist interpretation of the harvest results. This enables all those in poultry production to maintain consistency and optimum formulation in their feeds, the company claims.