You may have seen Multimin advertised and are wondering if this product is right for your animals. Recently our product review committee took a look at some of the research behind these products to assess where they could be of benefit to our clients.
What is Multimin?
Multimin is an injectable combination of trace elements (copper, selenium, zinc and manganese). It is designed to be administered to stock before high demand periods, such as calving, weaning and mating.
The product has been researched in New Zealand and internationally, with the results showing small but significant gains. We do not understand how Multimin produces the benefits seen in the trials. Still, it is speculated that the timing of administration and/or the combination of trace elements is important.
When would you consider giving Multimin?
Firstly, it is important to note Multimin is to be given to animals that already have normal Selenium, Zinc, and Copper levels. It is NOT designed to treat deficiencies.
Pre-mating – several studies in New Zealand and overseas have shown a benefit when Multimin is given before mating. Typically there is a 1-2% increase in 6-week in-calf rate and total pregnancy rates. These herds already had good reproductive performance.
Pre-calving – a recent study in Canterbury demonstrated clinical mastitis was halved in the first 30 days after calving. The effect did not continue beyond the first month, but as this is where the majority of clinical mastitis occurs, Multimin reduced the overall clinical mastitis. Again, these herds had normal trace element levels, continued with in-water supplementation and their standard dry cow and teat-sealant regimes.
Birth – Studies have investigated the effect of giving Multimin to calves at birth. A study done in New Zealand giving an injection of Multimin at birth showed decreased calf scours. Multimin appeared to be stimulating the immune system of the calves. Multimin did NOT reduce the chance of dying from scours once a calf was affected.
What about similar products on the market?
Recently a competitor product called Marksmin was launched, it includes vitamin B12. At this stage, Marksmin is a generic product designed to be the same as Multimin without any research to show it produces the same benefits. If you are looking at using a product like this and looking for a recommendation of which to use, Anexa has taken the cautious approach to stay with Multimin as it has the research behind it, particularly as the underlying mechanism of the benefits is not known.
We recommend that you speak with your herd veterinarian about the best time to give Multimin on your farm. Multimin is not designed to replace good practices, and in fact, it is given to herds that are already performing well and want to gain that extra edge. Be aware that more is not always better, a USA study showed a decrease in the conception rate when cows were dosed twice before mating, so we strongly encourage you to speak with your veterinarian about how you use this product to get the best return on your investment.
- Multimin, if used, should be given to animals with adequate trace element levels.
- Multimin may give benefits in reproductive, milk quality, and calf health when used in addition to best practice.
- Strategic use after discussion with your veterinarian will maximise your return on investment.