SHREDLAGE®. The process.
Already widely used in the United States, SHREDLAGE® is a conditioning process for producing maize silage. It involves chopping the plants to greater lengths than usual, ranging from 26 to 30 millimetres, and then processing the chopped material with the special SHREDLAGE® corncracker technology. The corncracker rollers, which have counterdirectional helical grooves, chop up the cob fragments completely and crush the kernels to split them thoroughly. In addition, the stalk fragments are also shredded longitudinally extremely effectively into strings and their bark layer is peeled thanks to the special surface of the rollers. Only genuine SHREDLAGE® corncracker rollers are able to provide this special form of processing. This technology, which is protected by patents and known around the world by the name SHREDLAGE®, has been acquired by CLAAS. Like the well-known sawtooth profile rollers, the SHREDLAGE® corncracker rollers are manufactured by CLAAS Industrietechnik in Paderborn, Germany.
This intensive processing multiplies the surface of the chopped material many times, resulting in significantly improved bacterial fermentation during ensiling and, above all, during digestion in the cow's rumen.
Trials conducted by the University of Wisconsin in 2012 show that SHREDLAGE® drastically increases the physical effectiveness of maize silage in the rumen while also improving the availability of the starch contained in all parts of the plant. As a result, the daily milk yield in the herds studied increased by up to two litres per cow. Furthermore, the rumen-friendly structure of the silage improved herd health.
A higher milk yield and improved livestock health are not the only benefits SHREDLAGE® has to offer dairy producers. As the availability of starch is optimised, it is possible to reduce the quantity of feed concentrate used while obtaining a higher overall milk yield. It is also possible to limit or even eliminate the use of fibre supplements such as straw, thereby providing further scope for cost savings.
Download: Results of feeding trial in Haus Riswick (pdf)
The SHREDLAGE® conditioning process was invented by Ross Dale and Roger Olsen, both of whom work as dairy nutritionists for dairy farms in the US.
Several years ago, in the course of their work, they recognised the benefits of maize silage with longer chop lengths and shredded plant material. Before this, the livestock nutritionists had for years supported the trend for short chop lengths but appreciated that these shorter lengths did not provide an optimal response to the physiological requirements of the rumen. This is because formation of the rumen mat is impeded which in turn depresses rumination. This makes it necessary to restrict the maize silage component of the feed ration accordingly.
In 2008, Roger Olsen, his father and Ross Dale developed the first prototype of a new SHREDLAGE® corncracker. This system met the requirement for intensive plant and kernel conditioning in combination with very long chop lengths. Within a very short time, a working version was built and followed by five different models for field trials. In the end, Dale and Olsen chose the top-performing corncracker and fitted it in 25 CLAAS JAGUAR forage harvesters. And so the success story began. Today, over 60% of the dairy farms in the Eastern US and 35% in the Western US are using SHREDLAGE® maize silage successfully.
SHREDLAGE® comes to Europe.
Roger Olson and Ross Dale will support CLAAS in the European market launch as well as the further development of the product. In the course of this activity, they will also attend various events.