Molasses is an excellent energy source in drought but needs to be fortified with urea and/or protein meal. These fortified molasses rations rely on adequate paddock roughage (over 700 kg dry matter per hectare), and are fed twice weekly at this stage. When paddock roughage is below 700 kg dry matter per hectare, these rations need to be fed three times weekly or with the addition of 1-2 kg of roughage/hd/day (see Primefact 322 Feeding calves in drought).
Molasses rations are fed in open troughs. (Do not confuse this with the roller drum method.) Although fortified molasses mixes are much more expensive than roller drums or blocks, experience has shown that they are far more effective in promoting the utilisation of dry feed and maintaining animal condition and production. Molasses has little protein, therefore urea and/or protein meal must be fed to balance the animal’s requirements and allow effective use of dry feed.
The contents of this Primefact include information on recommended molasses rations, buying molasses, urea, by-pass protein, meatmeal, roughage, phosphorus, method of feeding molasses, mixing molasses, and managing its intake.