Farmers and feed advisers are being encouraged to analyse incoming cereal samples to ensure accurate feed formulation.

The advice comes after analysis of the 2019 wheat and barley harvest showed marked regional variations in protein and energy levels.

Premier Nutrition’s Eloise Lawlor said that with overall yields above the five-year average, a harvest survey had confirmed that the protein of wheat has decreased. “The national survey results have shown an average 0.4% drop in wheat protein levels, with energy also decreasing by 0.09MJ/kg” she pointed out.

This reduction in energy levels isn’t surprising, she said, as this summer’s changeable conditions led to higher moisture content. “To compensate for these deficits in protein and energy, soya and fat inclusions may need to be increased in your diet formulations.”

She added that although the wetter conditions witnessed this year have influenced energy content, average mycotoxin levels across the UK remain low.