Last updated on October 23rd, 2020 at 02:17 pmReading Time: 3 minutes
100% protected trace minerals? What does that mean and why does it matter?
Let us explain. In brief, having trace minerals 100% protected enables the minerals to have the highest chance possible of getting into the bloodstream (and that’s where the real magic happens). And by giving the minerals the highest scientific chance of being absorbed, we are essentially giving your cattle the highest probability of sponging up those precious minerals so they can make a lasting difference.
That's why we believe in 100% protected trace minerals.
Highly Protected Mineral Supplement
Back in our early days, we followed the trend of what everyone else was doing: no chelates, no protected minerals, no rumen-bypass trace minerals, and so on. And, of course, like everyone else, we had sulfates, oxides, and poor, low availability minerals.
Was this cheap? Yes! Was it helping anyone? Well, not in the big picture.
With this low protection, the minerals had very little chance of weathering the turbulent journey to the small intestine and hence to the bloodstream. Think about it for a minute: if minerals don’t even reach the bloodstream to be absorbed, what good are they for your cows, and why are they even in the tubs? That’s when we realized we needed to do something to absolutely ensure that these minerals were getting where they needed to go!
Why Riomax® Is Different
When starting down our ‘protected trace minerals’ path, we began with 30% protection. In reality, that is actually very high compared to industry standards. Many companies claim they do just fine with 20 – 25% chelates, or protected trace minerals. There are also situations where companies tell you they have chelated minerals, but what they don’t mention is the ratio of chelates to non-chelates. What this can mean is that if they have, for example, 25% protected minerals, there is still 75% of the product made up of sulfates and oxides. Unfortunately, these are very unlikely to be absorbed into the body.
We soon realized that even 30% chelated minerals was not enough. A study done by Dr. Jerry Spears of North Carolina State University showed us the difference between unprotected minerals and protected minerals (trace minerals). He discovered that sulfates and oxides actually have a negative effect on the rumen bacteria (that’s the good bugs that are trying to win the war)!
Essentially, by feeding this cheap mineral; lightly protected and high in sulfates and oxides; we were hurting the good bugs, the ones who were trying to break down our forages! Dr. Spears explained that when cheap mineral is fed to the animal, the sulfates and oxides from the mineral reach the rumen. Further, they hurt the good bacteria and are less absorb-able to the animal.
That’s when we knew we had to be different if we wanted to truly help ranchers move their needle; after all, that is what we’re here for. This is when Esqort®, as we know it today, was born.
What is Esqort® Comprised of?
Esqort® is a unique combination of chelated trace minerals and crystal trace minerals. Essentially, this synergy gives you a trace mineral package that is 100% protected, with no sulfates and no oxides in the key trace minerals. Esqort includes Copper, Zinc and Manganese in the United States and Copper, Zinc and Selenium in Canada.
So, Why Is It Of All Importance To Supplement 100% Protected Trace Minerals?
That seems like a lot to digest, so let's break it down. 100% protected trace minerals means:
- Highest Inclusion Rate
- Maximum Chance of Reproductive Success
- Bolstered Immune Health
- Highest Chance of Expressing Genetic Potential
- Lowered Chance of Calf Sickness/Scours
Simply, we want to give your cattle the highest chance of absorbing that mineral into their bloodstream. We want the mineral to get where it needs to go...and you probably do too.
As one rancher recalled, "I used to use 'feel-good' mineral...the cheapest stuff you can get your hands on. Of course, all it contains is sulfates and oxides...but it's cheap and it makes you feel good. You feel good, but the cows don't".
He nailed it.
At Riomax®, we're here to help impact your economic model. Simply put, we're providing ways for your operation to reach its highest chance of reproductive success.