Molasses is a byproduct of sugar manufacturing and is usually produced from sugar cane or sugar beets. Molasses is usually incorporated into horse feeds because it improves the intake of feeds due to increased palatability when included. It also helps to reduce dustiness in overprocessed feeds, and can improve the taste of low-quality feeds.
Typical inclusion rates of molasses vary, but are usually included as 5 to 10% of the ration, and generally should not exceed 10 to 12%. Adding molasses will increase the moisture content of the feed which can contribute to faster mold growth in areas with warm weather climates. Molasses should not be fed to horses afflicted with hyperkalemic periodic paralysis (HYPP) because the higher potassium concentration in this feed can exacerbate the symptoms of the disease.