NORTH FLORIDA EXPERIMENT STATION
June 22, 1954
NFES Mimeo Report 54-6.
CITRUS AND BLACKiSTRA MOLASSES IN STEER FATTITING RATIONS
by F. S. Baker, Jr.
Assistant Animal Husbandman
The objectives of this feeding trial were: (1) to obtain further data on the
value of citrus molasses when replacing one-third, one-half, and two-thirds of the
ground snapped corn in steer fattening rations and (2) to compare citrus and black-
strap molasses in fattening rations.
Forty Hereford steers, approximately 15 months old, were selected for thb
trial. During a short preliminary period, the cattle were started on feed and
placed on the following rationsl
Lot I Lot II Lot III
Ground snapped corn Equal parts ground snapped corn One part ground snapped corn
-----and citrus molasses and two parts citrus molasses
Cottonseed meal Cottonseed meal Cottonseed meal
Kudzu hay Kudzu hay Kudzu hay
Lot IV Lot V
Two parts ground snapped corn Equal parts ground snapped corn
and one part citrus molasses and blackstrap molasses
Cottonseed meal Cottonseed meal
Iudzu hay Kudzu hay
All lots received the same allowance of cottonseed meal (2t5 lbs. per head
daily). The remainder of the concentrates (either ground snapped corn or corn
and molasses) was fed according to appetite. Hay was self-fed, and all lots had
free access to salt and steamed bonemeal.
When the first pen of cattle reached an acceptable market finish, it was
slaughtered. The remaining pens were then fed until they reached approximately
the same final weight as the pen which was slaughtered first.
Table 1-580 gives the results of the fattening trial.
Unlike the results obtained in previous trials1, steers fed citrus molasses
did not gain appreciably faster than those not fed molasses. This can possibly
be explained by the fact that high quality legume hay was fed in this trial,
1Mimeo. Reports North Florida Experiment Station, March 26, 1953, July 2, 1953,
and March 12, 1954.
Table 1-580: Results of Fattening Trial, March 3 to June 15, 1954
41o CS meal
Lot II Lot III Lot IV
Equal prts.gr.sn. One prt.gr.sn.corn Two prts.gr.sn.corn
corn & citrus mol. & 2 prts.citrus mol. & 1 prt.citrus mol.
41 CS meal 41, CS meal 41 CS meal
Hay Fay Hay_
Equal prts. gr. sn.
corn & blackstrap mol.
41 CS meal
Number of herd
Number of days
Average initial weight
Average final weight
Average daily gain
Average market weight
Average shrink (percent)
Market price per cwt. *
Average carcass weight
Averpae feeder grade
TT. S. carcass grades
Average Drice cwjt dressed
Average daily ration:
Grcund snpppe'. corn
415 cottonseed meal
Kud zu hay
Average lbs. feed per 100 lbs. gain:
Ground snapped corn 750.94
415. cottonseed meal 110.94
Kudzu hay 187.92
Steamed bonemeal 0.77
Feed Cost 100 lbs. gain
on; kudzu hay, $25 ton;
Feed prices: Ground snapped corn, $40 ton; citrus molsses, $20 ton; 41C cottonseed meal, $80 t
salt, $30 ton; steamed bonemeal, $100 ton; blpckstrap molasses, $30 ton.
* Tased on actual sale dressed beef (choice carcasses, $38.50 cwt; good carcasses, $36.50 cwt.)
while in the past poor quality peanut and grass hays have been used. Results of
recent work at the Ohio Station indicate that where poor quality grass hay is fed
in a corn-cob fattening ration, the addition of molasses stimulates gains. Where
legume hay was fed, there was apparently no benefit from adding molasses2.
Steers fed citrus molasses (Lots II, III, and IV) made cheaper gains than
either those fed no molasses (Lot I) or those fed blackstrap molasses (Lot V).
This was primarily due to the low cost per ton of the citrus molasses used in
this trial. Steers fed the higher rates of citrus molasses (equal parts molasses
and corn,or two parts molasses and one part corn) made slightly cheaper gains
than those fed two parts corn and one part molasses, but the latter gained slightly
faster and graded higher.
When compared with the performance of the cattle in other lots, the gain,
grades, and yield of the cattle receiving two parts citrus molasses and one part
ground snapped corn was satisfactory. In the past, cattle have made adequate
gains on this ration as long as they ate a sufficient quantity of feed. In some
instances, certain lots of molasses have been rather unpalatable, resulting in a
low feed consumption with the high-molasses ration and consequently relatively
low gains. From results to date, it appears that if cattle are eating enough
total feed, it is possible to feed two parts of molasses and one part of corn with
very satisfactory results. This is particularly desirable with molasses as
relatively cheap as it is at present. It is interesting to note that the cattle
in Lot III ate as much as 16 pounds citrus molasses per head daily for a short
period without evidence of scouring.
In this one trial, blackstrap molasses did not give as good results as
citrus when both were fed in equal parts with ground snapped corn. However this
is the first comparison of these two molasses at this Station, and results of
only one trial are inconclusive.
Rations with various levels of citrus molasses produced cheaper gains than a
ground snapped corn ration without molasses. Gains from the rations did not
A ration containing two parts citrus molasses and one part ground snapped
corn gave very satisfactory results.
Plackstrap molasses did not produce as good results as citrus molasses when
both were fed in equal parts with ground snapped corn.
2Pope, L. S. 1954. What's Tew in Beef Husbandry. Better Farming Methods, March, 1954.