Letters: 10/99

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Manufacturer Supports AAFCO
Thank you for the article on supplements and labeling (August 1999). My company, Mobile Milling Service, has worked hard to comply with AAFCO guidelines. We’ve changed the labeling on our buckets four times over the past three years. We have nothing to hide from anyone, and we’re proud of the work we’ve done with AAFCO.

I’m glad you have brought the mislabeling problems to the attention of the horse-owning public. It needs to be done. Although a consumer can call their state department of agriculture to see if a particular product is registered, it is a lot of trouble.

I attend AAFCO meetings, which are open to anyone in the industry. We’re all in this together to make feed supplements better.

-Bryan McColl
Vice President, Sales
Mobile Milling Service

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Rice Bran Fat
In August 1999, you had an excellent article on brans and beet pulp. However, I need clarification on your response to “Where does rice bran fit in the picture'” You stated that although the major difference is in the proportion of calories that come from fat, the high fat content of rice bran does not result in any higher concentration of calories per pound. Maybe I’m just slow on the uptake, but this seems like a contradiction to me.

-Angela M. Kowalski
Willington, Conn.

Rice bran has higher nondigestible fiber content (acid detergent fiber %) and twice as much ash as wheat bran. In fact, in the detailed information on feeds for horses found in the NRC Nutrient Requirements of Horses, ingredients from alfalfa to yeast, only one (anchovy fish meal - a protein booster) has a higher ash content and that is because of the ground up bone in it). Oats and corn also contain more calories per pound than rice bran. Note, however, these figures apply to raw/fresh rice bran, not processed rice bran. Caloric density may be slightly higher with extruded rice bran products but even then is not significantly different from corn.

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Cell Phones On Horseback
Carrying a cell phone with you on trail rides (saddlebags, August 1999) is a great idea but don’t attach it to the horse. In the case of a fall or injury, the horse may run off or you may be too injured to stand and reach your phone. I would advise a fanny pack or belt holder for the phone instead. It’s advisable to always carry your phone, even at the barn if you are riding alone.

-Colleen Bureman
Springfield, Mo.