Editor’s note: The following column was provided by Rock River Laboratory.

Many factors contribute to the growth of molds and yeast in feed. A wet and cool harvest or storing feed at moisture levels above the recommended guidelines can increase the occurrence and levels of mold and yeast. Certain molds can cause disease and produce mycotoxins. While not all molds are harmful to cattle, their presence can contribute to production and health problems in your herd. Further complicating the issue, high yeast presence can be a factor in aerobic instability in feeds which can reduce dry matter intake, production, and growth.

Rock River Laboratory Inc. has analyzed 532 samples for molds and another 975 for mycotoxins since May 1, 2011.

The findings are reported in the following graphs: