Optimising grazing systems thanks to rotative pasture plans: a solution to increasing farm autonomy and reducing feed costs.

A contribution from Danone Ecosystem Fund

Why does it matter?

In grass fed systems, it is important to optimise grazing. Proper pasture management is key to reduce feed costs. However, increasing grazing can be challenging, especially in winter or during dry periods.

How did we solve this?

A solution to optimising grass fed systems is introducing rotative pasture planning. This requires dividing the pasture in paddocks, individually accessible for cows, and preparing a rotative plan to optimise grass cutting and evaluate potential feed supplementation needs. Sowing multispecies pastures is also an option to guarantee the system’s resilience to hot summer months.

With such a system, it was possible to increase grazing to 330 days/year, decreasing feed costs by 60%, while cows production decreased by 30% maximum. Overall, this was beneficial for the farmers and positively affected animal wellbeing.

Opportunities for other farms?

This may be replicated in extensive farming systems who want to increase grazing time and optimise meadow productivity.

For more information on this best practice and on other practices implemented in France, please login and/or visit the French tool box for farmers or Danone Ecosystem Fund

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