At the Swiss Federal Research Station for Animal Production at Posieux, four conservation methods were compared and their impact on forage quality was investigated. The evaluation of propionic acid as preservative for moist hay was of particular interest. Three roughage types were harvested: a late first cut as well as an early and late third cut. Each cut was conserved according to the following procedures: moist hay without preservative, moist hay with preservative, big bale silage wrapped with stretch film, barn dried hay. In the three first variants the forage was pressed with a cubic baler. The evaluation of the efficacy of propionic acid as preservative for moist hay did not yield satisfying and clear results. Even though the classical analyses revealed some differences between treated and untreated hay, the extent is of no importance. In both cases, hay quality suffered from heat damage. The poor quality of treated hay is obviously attributable to technical problems. On the other hand, the strongly wilted big bale silage yielded good quality roughage.
Birdsfoot trefoil and sainfoin are used in mixtures for perennial hay meadows and for tannin-containing fodder. Agroscope is adding two new cultivars of birdsfoot trefoil to the ‘List of Recommended Varieties of Forage Plants’, whilst there is no change in the case of sainfoin.
Tall oat grass and golden oat grass are typical hay-meadow grasses that are also suitable for forage mixtures. Of the four tall and three golden oat grass varieties tested, only one new variety of tall oat grass is likely to make it onto the List of Recommended Varieties.
Stevenel P., Wendling M., Brabant C., Suss H., Savoyat C., Dierauer H., Mascher F., Charles R.
FiBL and Agroscope investigated bread wheat varieties to determine their yield and quality stability. The results show that the choice of variety must be adapted to the site and that high yield potential does not go hand-in-hand with a high protein content.