Diversity of practices and advisors in mineral and vitamin supplementation of dairy farms - INRAE - Institut national de recherche pour l’agriculture, l’alimentation et l’environnement Access content directly
Conference Poster Year : 2023

Diversity of practices and advisors in mineral and vitamin supplementation of dairy farms


In a context of agroecological transition, reducing inputs and maintaining animal health are important issues for livestock activities. In French dairy farms, addition of minerals and vitamins to rations is a common practice to prevent health disorders or production losses, but knowing and covering cows’ requirements is a complex process and the farmers’ practices are poorly described. Moreover, scientific recommendations adapted to feeding systems with a large part of fodder are scarce and it is difficult to know how do farmers take decisions on mineral and vitamin supplementation. Our objective was to decipher the way practices and recommendations are performed for mineral and vitamin supplementation in the context of herb-based livestock, such as largely encountered in Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes region (France). A study based on semi-structured interviews was conducted with 24 dairy farmers and 13 of their advisors. A qualitative and thematic analysis of discourses was conducted and led to identify 5 main variables characterizing the diversity of practices. A multiple correspondence analysis and ascending hierarchical classification allowed to classify the farmers into 3 types according to their mineral and vitamin supplementation practices: (1) farmers expressing indifference toward mineral and vitaminic supplementation; (2) farmers expressing a high need to be advised; (3) farmers looking for autonomy. The first type gathered more simplified practices than the other 2 types. Interviews with advisors revealed 3 types of advisors: feed sales representatives; nutritionists of performance monitoring associations, and veterinarians. Each advisor is characterized by a particular message. Our results are consistent with sociological studies on the relationship between farmers and their advisors and confirm the extreme complexity and diversity of minerals and vitamins supplementation practices, in a context of lack of scientific knowledge on this subject.
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Dates and versions

hal-04286514 , version 1 (15-11-2023)


  • HAL Id : hal-04286514 , version 1


C. Manoli, G. Springer, L Barbier, Chantal Chassaing, Cécile Sibra, et al.. Diversity of practices and advisors in mineral and vitamin supplementation of dairy farms. 74. Annual meeting of the european federation of animal science (EAAP), Aug 2023, Lyon, France. Wageningen Academic Publishers, Book of abstracts, 29, pp.719, 2023, Book of abstracts of the 74th annual meeting of the european federation of animal science. ⟨hal-04286514⟩
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