Future farming practices need to be assessed by the dairy industry for any impacts they may have on the detailed composition and processability of milk. These impacts may change the milk price a farmer receives and the milk processability,product range and product quality. The use of sodium fumarate (an organic acid) to reduce methane production from dairy cows has previously been reported. This experiment investigated the effect of intra-ruminal infusions of sodium fumarate on the detailed composition of milk from dairy cows. Fumarate (5% of daily dry matter intake) was infused into 8 lactating cows while 8 cows received infusions of water as a control. Milksamples were collected during a covariate period, then again following a 16-day treatment period, of which cows were housed indoors for the last 9 days. Gross composition of milk and other production parameters have been presented previously. Milk yield, fat and protein were not affected but lactose concentrations were significantly higher in the milk of cows receiving the fumarate. In the current study, none of the individual casein proteinsmeasured showed an effect of treatment. Of the whey proteins examined, concentrations of α-lactalbumin (α-La) were higher (1.07 vs. 0.98 mg/mL; sed 0.038; P < 0.05) and bovine serum albumin (BSA) concentrations were lower (214.6 vs. 251.0 mg/L; sed 15.1; P < 0.05) in the milk of cows receiving fumarate. None of the individual fatty acids or minerals examined showed a treatment effect. The addition of sodium fumarate to the diet of dairy cows in early lactation does not have a major influence on the composition of milk, suggesting that the product could be used with minimal impact on milk composition and product quality at this early stage of lactation.
Proceedings of the New Zealand Society of Animal Production, Volume 67, Wanaka, 242-247, 2007
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