Ken Tamminga from Jaylor spreads the TMR gospel.
Innovative Canadian feed mixer manufacturer Jaylor turns 30 this year.
To mark the occasion, Australian Farm Machinery caught up with the company’s sales and marketing specialist, Ken Tamminga, during his recent visit to our shores.
Ken is the son of Jaylor founder, Jake Tamminga, and this was his sixth visit to Australia. He thrives on doing the deep dive into research, especially from the perspectives of product performance and customer experience.
This time around, Ken visited cattle producers as far north as Rockhampton and beef and dairy operations throughout New South Wales and Victoria, with PFG’s Kane Saunders, Jordan Vickers and Brendan Lee for company.
What were the highlights of your trip?
It would have to be the people. It’s exciting to see the team growing, with Kane in Queensland and Jordan as a technical product specialist. The calibre of the individuals joining the team is phenomenal.
Kane comes from a service background. He brings that as an asset in the field and to the dealers because he’s able to address any technical aspects of the product right on the spot. We all have some level of technical expertise, but Kane comes with that in spades.
Since you’ve been visiting Australia do you believe Jaylor’s brand recognition has grown?
Absolutely – sales have more than doubled, with a continued opportunity for growth, and we’re expecting it to double again. It really depends on how fast we can execute our plans.
Does that involve a new model, or updates to existing models?
Our philosophy on product development is continuous improvement. And we like to take product feedback from customers; it’s really important when I’m doing visits like this to gain their feedback, chat about what’s working, any challenges they might have, along with suggestions.
That way, information directly from the field, or from dealers, can be incorporated into Jaylor products, the designs and the way we deliver. It’s also about our philosophy – customer service is about customer delight.
How different is the feed mix approach in North America and Canada compared to Australia?
There are differences in the philosophy around total mixed ration and partially mixed ration or partial pasture and TMR in combination.
They monitor the recipes, the ration, and they also measure performance against that ration, so they can integrate with other farm management systems. But also you can measure feedback and refusals and do a lot with that kind of measuring, what’s going on in the operation and making sure we’re getting the most out of ration and a lot of those features are actually built into the DG 500, which is the scale indicator that comes with every Jaylor mixer. – Ken Tamminga
For most areas of the industry in North America, we’re feeding a full TMR, so every part of the animal’s diet is achieved through the mixer – we have 100 per cent control of each ingredient, balancing it from a chemical feed test and optimising the physical characteristics of the TMR ration, along with this uniformity, and trying to achieve resistance to sorting.
In Australia, we’re often trying to use those same benefits in concert with pasture. And it’s called a PMR system – a partially mixed ration system – and the philosophy around TMR can be applied to supplement the pasture that’s available.
It’s about trying to achieve the best outcome from the mix.
Exactly – animals today often have genetic potential beyond their capacity to consume on pasture. Even good pasture is often not able to supply the nutritional requirements to allow animals to achieve their full potential.
So, with the TMR, we’re trying to understand where the pasture’s at, what total of their nutritional requirements they’re currently able to consume from that pasture, and then fill up the data to satisfy the animal’s genetic potential at every stage of production.
Seasonal factors impact on TMR mix, surely, given that in US and CAN often there is no pasture at all during the colder months?
Right, but in Australia it is also vital and TMR is the tool that many producers are using to optimise their operation; to be able to produce more with less land. And while it’s true pasture may be available for most of the year, in many parts of Australia pasture that meets the nutritional requirements of the animal is not available for the whole year.
Jaylor’s nutritionist is Doctor Alan Vaage – is he accompanying you for your next visit?
Yes, and the purposes are similar to what we did six months ago.
One, support the dealers – have an expert in TMR nutrition talk directly to the sellers, the dealer principals, and answer any questions not just from a technical perspective, but from a nutritional perspective. It’s about producing the most out of every piece of the equipment.
Secondly, we’ve also run nutritional seminars, such as the one we did in Holbrook (NSW) last year. Alan works through the fundamentals of TMR nutrition, establishes the concept, why it’s important, then addresses specific applications in that area.
He talks about the value of land, the value of animals and what they’re able to accomplish for both beef and dairy and help understand how to incorporate a TMR mixer into an operation that hasn’t done mixing before.
And Dr Vaage does on-farm visits, too?
For sure – he helps producers craft a system that’s going to allow them to attain the benefits of the TMR mixer, and then for individuals using TMR currently, be able to visit their farm and observe what’s happening and offer a suggestion to improve what they’re doing. Alan is really specialised in gaining the most out of a ration to allow the mixer to do its best.
For more information about Jaylor call 1800 888 359 or visit jaylor.com.au