Garlic for Cattle: Which Form is Best?

Garlic is a common livestock supplement to promote health and repel pests. But not all garlic products are created equal.

Posted by Amber Foote on Apr 23, 2024 1:41:02 PM

Benefits of Garlic for Cattle

First, let's look at what is actually in garlic that makes it such a great natural health booster and pest repellent for animals.

Garlic bulbs contain a mixture of organosulfur compounds; allicin is the main component that provides active health benefits when ingested. The National Institute of Health (NIH) has isolated and studied how the allicin in garlic functions biologically: 

"researchers have found that garlic has a lot of biological functions, such as anti-microbial, anti-inflammatory, anti-atherosclerotic [reduce fatty deposits in arteries], anti-diabetic, anti-mutagentic, anti-carcinogenic, antioxidant and immune-modulation activities."

According to the NIH, garlic supplementation in cattle has been shown to:

  • Greatly reduce biting pests
  • Increase meat quality
  • Improve growth performance 
  • Increase feed intake
  • Decrease severity of scours (diarrhea) in calves
  • Increase feed digestibility in the rumen
  • Decrease use and need for antibiotic growth promoters

4 Ways of Feeding Garlic to Cattle

Garlic's benefits are many, but it's potency varies according to the way it's prepared and the form it comes in. That means the benefits your cattle get may vary depending on which form you feed and how it’s grown. So which form of garlic is the most bioactive, stable, and potent way of feeding it to your herd?

Garlic for natural fly control

Fresh Garlic

Some livestock owners use fresh garlic to supplement their animals' diet. While this can be done, there are a few important things you should know. Garlic needs to be crushed to trigger the creation of allicin, and get the benefits you’re hoping for. There are some downsides to trying this method of garlic supplementation:

  • Crushed fresh garlic loses bioactive potency very rapidly (within a couple hours).
  • Bioactive potency varies from clove to clove and is difficult to regulate how much your animals are actually getting.

Garlic Powder

Garlic powder is made by drying and dehydrating cloves and then grinding them into fine particles. While garlic powder is easier to feed than fresh-crushed, it’s far less nutritious, and the active allicin is usually destroyed during the manufacturing process when heat dried. In fact, a study by Oregon State University showed that powdered garlic supplements do not contain any allicin.

Garlic powder supplements are also more susceptible to spoilage by growth of yeasts, molds, or coliforms. Products containing garlic powder have more strict storage requirements (temperature, moisture exposure, etc.) than products containing garlic oil (see below).

Garlic Flakes/Granules

Another common way of feeding animals garlic is in granules or flakes. These supplements are usually processed through freeze-dried, air-dried, or cold-pressed dehydration. Less allicin is destroyed through these processing methods than in conventional heat-dried powdered garlic, so they may be more beneficial for your animals than powder.

Garlic still loses potency as it sits on the shelf, though, so if you buy granules or flakes, make sure the product comes in a container with a tight-fitting lid to help retain freshness, and resist the urge to buy in bulk.

Garlic Oil

Garlic oil is highly concentrated, which means much less is needed to gain the same benefits as other garlic forms. Oil is typically prepared using steam distillation. The garlic cloves are crushed then steamed, and the resulting condensation contains the oil.

Garlic oil also comes in synthetic or bioidentical form. This oil has the same flavor and active organosulfur compounds that are contained in natural garlic.

Tom McCullough—business development manager for FMF Specialty Agri Products, which creates garlic oil compounds for animal supplements—said synthetic oil generally has a more stable shelf life and more consistent levels of bioactive compounds than other garlic forms:

“There is high variability in organosulfur compounds with garlic due to the climate it’s grown in, soil type, amount of rainfall, and cultivar...We create a bioidentical garlic oil that we’re constantly doing quality control on to ensure we’re providing customers with the same product every time.”

Why Choose Redmond 10 Fine with Garlic?

Redmond 10 Fine with Garlic is a smart, safe, and effective choice to give your cattle as a garlic supplement. It comes in a natural, loose mineral sea salt that your animals naturally crave and already love, with the added benefit of pure, bioidentical garlic oil. Here’s what sets our product apart:

  • 10 Fine with Garlic contains over 60 essential trace minerals your cattle need
  • 12 times more potent than garlic powder
  • Consistent levels of bioactive garlic compounds to benefit your herd
  • Made in the USA
  • Longer shelf life than other garlic supplements
  • Easy to offer free choice year round or mixed with feed rations
  • Keeps flies and other biting pests away from your cattle
  • Click to see the amazing garlic fly prevention results found by the Saskatchewan department of agriculture!

Check out this photo that one happy customer sent us. You can easily spot the brand new member of the herd, that had not had a chance to eat their 10 Fine with Garlic!

Garlic repelling flies from cows

With Redmond 10 Fine with Garlic, you can feel confident you’re getting the best garlic supplement available. Your cattle get all the benefits of a natural mineral sea salt, plus the health-promoting and pest-repelling benefits of bioactive garlic. Click below or give us a call today at 866-709-3192 to give 10 Fine with Garlic a try!

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Topics: Garlic Cattle Supplement

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