Reading a Manufactured Feed Label

Label format as recommended by the Association of American Feed Control Officials

Label Definitions

(A) Brand name, if any, and product name.

(B) Purpose – identifies the species and class(es) for which the feed is intended. The purpose statement may be omitted if the purpose is inherent in the product name.

(C) Guaranteed analysis – lists the amounts of regulated and significant nutrients in the feed.

(D) List of ingredients – ingredients in livestock feeds are generally not listed in order of predominance, i.e., the first ingredient is not necessarily the major ingredient. Additionally, general terms are often used to define ingredients such as “grain products or plant protein products.” This allows the manufacturer to 1) respond to market conditions by incorporating flexibility into the formulation and 2) protect the proprietary nature of their product.

(E) Feeding directions plus any warning or caution statements.

(F) Name and address of manufacturer.

(G) Quantity statement.

Unless otherwise stated, all of the information on the label is on an “as fed or as sampled” basis. If evaluating or formulating a ration on a dry matter basis, this information must be converted to a dry matter basis. Most grain mixes are assumed to be 90% dry matter. The label information can be converted to a dry matter basis by dividing the values by 0.9. For example, the crude protein content of this feed equals 12.0/0.9 = 13.3% on a dry matter basis. If the actual dry matter is known, it should be used instead of 0.9.