During the forage wilting and ensiling process, a protein degradation takes place that affects the different protein fractions. In addition to the silage conditions, secondary plant ingredients also affect the different protein fractions. In an experiment, the influence of the wilting and ensiling process on the protein fractions of the first and third cuts of the three legume species alfalfa, red clover and sainfoin was investigated. Samples of the fresh, wilted and ensiled material were analysed. Irrespective of legume type, the proportion of non-protein nitrogen (NPN, fraction A) increased significantly from the fresh to the wilted and ensiled material. The highest relative increase in NPN fraction was observed in alfalfa, where the proportion in the silage was 60 % higher than in red clover and sainfoin silage. The condensed tannins in the sainfoin and the polyphenol oxidase activity in the red clover are possible reasons for the lower protein degradation in these two species.
Which stakeholders in the dairy sector have an influence on the productive life of dairy cows? Research results from FiBL and Agroscope suggest that broad-based cooperation is needed to create structures for a longer productive life.
Agriculture is aiming to reduce greenhouse gas and ammonia emissions. Agroscope showed that for dairy cattle housing, feed composition plays a role in these emissions as well as wind and temperature.
Lazzari G., Münger A., Eggerschwiler L., Borda-Molina D., Seifert J., Camarinha-Silva A., Schrade S., Zähner M., Zeyer K., Kreuzer M., Dohme-Meier F.
Tannin-containing feedstuffs like Acacia mearnsii and sainfoin (Onobrychis viciifolia) have a measurable impact in reducing methane emissions from dairy cows. However, since these feedstuffs in some cases lead to productivity losses, careful consideration must be given to their use.