I fail to see how paying $2 a lb for a complete elctrolyte blend with salt and other minerals is a waste of money when grocery store salt is just salt and what 1.30 a lb ? Not to mention its those "other " minerals they also need.
Not to mention you can buy a 33 lb horse quality block that is crumbly and easy for horses (have to keep it out of rain) for the astronomical price of 35 cents a lb,, you really going to try to mix up your own special blend for 35 cents a lb ? That's not even penny wise, just plain old pound foolish.
It would be foolish to buy human grade salt to feed to livestock at a price of $1.30/# when you can buy livestock salt for $.14/#.
It's just as outrageous to pay for the salt that is added to popular electrolyte products.
Apple a Day is probably the most popular one out there. One ounce of product costs $0.316. At 68% salt, that salt portion costs $0.215. The stock salt would of only cost $0.006 for the same amount.
Apple Dex is $0.16 per ounce. At 73% sugar, the sugar portion which my horses don't need cost my an extra $0.117.
On the subject of SmartPaks, Smart Lytes is 50% salt. The salt portion costs $0.16 for only 1/2 ounce. 1/2 ounce of livestock salt costs me $0.004.
If you add in 1 ounce of a loose mineral, my costs will be only $0.04. So for less than $0.05 I can feed 2 oz of product (1 oz salt and 1 oz minerals) that is about 60% salt and 40% minerals (electrolytes) plus vitamins. My electrolyte values are going to be far superior to any mixed products out there.
For one horse, maybe it's not worth having multiple products to feed but if you extend it out for even 10 horses, you costs drop from $3.10/day to $.25/day feeding at a rate of 1 oz per horses. Over the course of the year that's a savings of $1,000. That's real money to me.