Monday, November 13, 2006

An Updated Version of Cornell FORVAL for Estimating the Market Value of Forage Crops.

Peng Li and Gary Fick. Cornell Univ, Crop and Soil Sciences, 515 Bradfield Hall, Ithaca, NY 14853

Although Cornell FORVAL has been used in research and extension, its main application has been in the classroom where it demonstrates how results of tests for forage nutritive value can be converted to estimates of the fair market price of those forages.  The mathematical algorithms were developed and published in the 1980s and 90s based on current market information for soybean meal, corn grain, and reference forage legume and grass hays, with oat straw as a source of nutritional fiber should it be deficient in the ration.  However, the relationship of market prices to types of feeds has changed significantly, and the program has been updated to reflect those changes.  Reference concentrates have been generalized so that other protein and energy feeds (e.g., fishmeal and distillers grains) can be easily substituted in the program.  Straw prices often exceed grass hay prices, so “low-cost grass hay” has replaced straw in calculation of the market value of nutritional fiber.  In addition, almost all forage testing laboratories now report estimates of total digestible nutrients (TDN), so TDN has been made an input value instead of a calculated value.  The program is available as an Excel spreadsheet mode.

Handout (.pdf format, 201.0 kb)