In the last three years, actually since the worldwide financial crisis started – which coincided with the founding of my consulting service (I trust the two are not related!) – I have reviewed a lot of premix formulas with a ‘mandate’ to reduce cost.
One of the first victims that I hunt down religiously is cobalt. I understand that before the
commercial development of vitamin B12, cobalt was given to pigs to promote bacterial production of B12 in the gut, which B12 would end up eaten by the pigs through the habit of ‘tasting’ their feces now and then.
So, why are we still adding cobalt in pig diets? This remains a true mystery to me. I have not found a single reference to cobalt being needed in modern diets. And, being cheap to add no longer applies as an excuse. So far, no premix manufacturer, pig producer, or pig complained when I removed their cobalt.
What do you think?