Impact of Great O Plus Feeding Tubs on Beef Cows, Bulls and Calves

Observations by Beef Producers

NBO3 Technologies has developed a lick tub that has been enriched with GreatOPlus feed nutrient, containing an inclusion of microalgae that provides numerous essential fatty acids to improve animal performance.

“We used Great O Plus tubs at Ginger Hill Angus this past year and saw significant improvements in our overall herd health, including reductions in pneumonia and pinkeye. GreatOPlus was also added to our bull developer ration, and we saw significant improvement in the bulls’ digestive health and daily gains. Semen score and fertility test results were also tremendous with 100% of the yearlings passing!"

Dr. Brooke Miller, MD
Ginger Hill Angus | Washington, VA
Immediate Past President, U.S. Cattleman’s Assoc.


Long chain fatty acids are essential to animal diets, and among the most important are Omega-3s.

All mammals – rumen and mono-gastric – maintain Omega-3 fatty acids in their system, synthesized through their diet. But most grain or protein ingredients have very little Omega-3, and in most cases Omega-3 fatty acids are not in adequate levels. Omega-3 fatty acids must be synthesized from external food sources and are not always readily available.

In many cases Omega-3s or are not balanced against Omega-6 fatty acids that also are resident in grains, protein, and some forages but cause inflammation in the rumen. High Omega-6 to Omega-3 ratios negatively affect the function of rumen bacteria and the conversion of nutrients in feeds.

Depending on the species, balancing fatty acids with flax and microalgae in GreatOPlus has been observed to lower the 6:3 ratio by approximately 50 percent of the total rations fed.

Other functions observed in rumen animals with a balanced Omega 6:3 ration include

  • Improved bypass and conversion of nutrients digested in the rumen, possibly allowing for reduction of methane expulsion.

  • Improved energy utilization

  • Maintained health and performance of rumen bacteria and cell wall repair

  • Improved rumen performance and fatty acid balancing allows the natural autoimmune system to perform at a higher level of efficacy.

  • Better respiratory and heart function.

  • Improved reproduction. Activity of sperm improves as well as a healthier reproduction system in females. We have seen as much as a 30% improvement in first service. This is especially true with first service heifers.

  • Calf performance improves during transition to solid feed with fatty acids from GO+. Less respiratory issues and scour problems have been observed, as well as less need for antibiotics.

With extensive research at Kansas State University and elsewhere, NBO3 has fed over one million head of livestock cost effectively with NBO3’s Omega-3 enriched feed. The Omega-6:3 ratio has improved substantially, going from the more traditional 20:1 ratio to under 3:1 in beef. The reduction improves feed-to-gain ratios of up to 10%, decreased morbidity/mortality, improved reproductive health, and the need for antibiotics.

Real Results

Bulk feed and lick tubs containing GreatOPlus with microalgae were fed to herds starting in late 2020 and variously throughout 2021. Ranchers and beef producers have seen dramatic results using GreatOPlus feed nutrient:

Pregnancy checks of heifers in Fall, 2021, resulted in:

  • 78 heifers – 76 bred / two open. Cows were bred using AI and a clean-up bull for 30 days.
  • 90 three-year-old cows - 87 bred / three open. Cows were with bulls for 50 days.
  • 330 cows – 306 bred / 24 open. These were older cow herd. Cows were with mostly one sire group.

Background – Pregnancy checkers are a group of veterinarians who performs 8000+ tests from Huron, SD, to Jordon, MT. The Vet’s reported there should be no late calves and should all calf within 35 days and that the cows were in exceptional shape and noticeably better than others in the area, considering 2021 was a tough year . The Vets initially warned that this was not a good year for cow conception levels. Results were typically poor, and most checks showed 20% open cows at the best and more than often.

Tony Phipps | Jordan, MT
Rancher for 30 years

The LaRues ranch is at an elevation of 6,500 feet.

  • Seventy of 73 bulls had their best recorded fertility test. One bull never developed and two showed infections in the semen which was remedied with medication.
  • 34 head of 2- to 3-year-old cows were fed Great O Plus tubs and the results were 100% in preg tests.
  • 30 head of mixed young and older cows were fed a mineral salt, protein feed. The group was preg tested and were 30% open.

Background - Paps – (High- Altitude Pulmonary Hypertension) commonly know as (Brisket Disease) is a constant issue with fast gaining animals at high altitude. This fast acting pulmonary condition can kill the best gaining animals very quickly. Typically, they have a test done for PAPs and move the animals with the condition to a lower altitude. Lick tubs using GreatOPlus with microalgae to provide essential fatty acid indicated a 50% reduction in the PAPs syndrome. Examined bulls had good results when semen tested and scrotal size was 2 to 3 cm larger, while bulls handled for PAPs testing or clipped were much calmer. Aggressive issues were significantly less when handling the bulls. Cows were less aggressive when been handled. Generally, there were fewer sick calves.

Jim and Deané LaRue | Colorado
Ranchers for 25 years

"46 yearling bulls tested with best results in 65 years. 227 steers were fed on lick tubs, and 228 were not fed lick tubs, as a control. The steers on lick tubs showed a 16-pound improvement in gain. Feeding period was 45 days."

Huntley Ranch | Winston MT

"50 of 50 yearling bulls tested very well and were reported as best ever."

Windmill Ranch | Haigler, NE
Ranched for 70 years

"42 of 43 bulls tested very well and were also calmer to handle. Calves acted noticeably quieter when weighed and loaded."

Wilson Angus | Western MT
Ranched for 55 years

"98 heifers bred / two were open. These were the best reported results in recent years (including good weather years). Also, there were two open were in the 3-year-olds. Heifers had very good body condition."

Fairhaven Colony, MT

"Bred 45 first-time heifers in late 2020. The results were 100%. This is the first time Muili has seen a 100% at this stage."

Mike Muili | Western, MT
Rancher for 50 years

All the results collected by Jeff Wilson were herds using Great O Plus in bulk feed or lick tubs with micro- algae. Each producer observed positive results in their herds. The pregnancy test results in all cases were well above this year’s average tests in the testing area.

Taste Observations

In several individual and group experiences their experience of the beef they ate was reported to be the
best they have ever eaten.

Executive Chef Ross Andrew noted that, “This beef is bullet-proof.” He indicated that he has “tried to ruin this meat by over cooking and letting it sit out for extended periods of time, and the beef is still good. Notably, Andrew stated that kitchen clean-up was much easier because of the poly unsaturated fat and that odor from the precooked meat was considerably less. Ross indicated that the beef quality will sell itself and the easier clean-up process needs to be promoted.

“I tried your ground beef in spaghetti… the meat is absolutely fantastic.  Very little fat while cooking, and the aroma was extremely pleasant. I did not salt or pepper the meat while cooking, I left it completely natural, as I wanted the true taste of the meat before adding the sauce. I noticed that the meat didn’t have a bland taste without salt and pepper, the meat actually had flavor. When I put the spaghetti together, the enhanced the flavor of the spaghetti., My husband and I both enjoyed the spaghetti better than we had in the past. After sitting overnight in the fridge, the flavor was even more noticeable. It was even better the next day. What was important to me is that I have no gall bladder, and no matter what meat I eat it answers back to me within 30 min after eating. This did not happen. My stomach never once got upset.”

Rebecca Condon | Butte, MT