In today’s world, dairy leaders are facing difficult challenges. Industry consolidation along with changes in consumer perception of dairy products makes the dairy industry very competitive. Understanding and responding to the main trends is paramount to the dairy operation’s success.

The DKC’s multidisciplinary team researches and brings insights and strategies that help dairy leaders to drive better business decisions. The DKC’s insights provide valuable knowledge in critical business areas such as nutrition and feeding, reproduction, housing, replacement, and management practices.

yeast-supplementation

Effects of yeast supplementation in transition cows

During the last 3 weeks of gestation, cow’s requirements for energy increase due to fetal development and colostrum production. At the same time, dry matter (DM) intake drops significantly during this period. This mismatch between nutrient intake and demand generates a negative energy balance towards the end of the pregnancy that is prolonged for several weeks after calving. Additionally, health problems during the transition period have a negative impact on the profitability of the operation due to increased veterinary expenses, reduced production, reduced reproduction performance, early culls, and deaths.

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Histidine-supplementation

Histidine supplementation increases milk protein production

Methionine and lysine are the main limiting amino acids in lactating dairy cow diets. However, recent research shows histidine may be a limiting amino acid as well. A series of three studies (2015, 2016, 2017) conducted at The Pennsylvania State University’s Dairy Teaching and Research Center reported greater intake and milk protein yield in high-production cows fed low-protein diets supplemented with rumen-protected (RP) histidine.

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Reducing aflatoxin excretion in milk

Reducing aflatoxin excretion in milk

Aflatoxins are metabolites produced by mold fungi such as Aspergillus flavus and A. parasiticus under certain conditions. The most abundant aflatoxin, aflatoxin B1, is a potent carcinogen and it is considered the most toxic naturally occurring toxin. After ingestion, aflatoxin B1 is bio-transformed into the secondary metabolite aflatoxin M1 and excreted in milk, urine and feces.

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Supplementation of essential oils in dairy cow diets

Supplementation of essential oils in dairy cow diets

Essentials oils are volatile aromatic compounds with an oily appearance extracted from plant materials typically by steam distillation. Traditionally, they have been used in dairy diets to modify ruminal microflora and alter rumen fermentation. Recent research; however, shows the implication of some essential oils on physiologic functions in the cows…

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Synthetic flavors, do they improve intake in dairy calves?

Synthetic flavors, do they improve intake in dairy calves?

Synthetic flavors are additives used in the animal feed industry to enhance the smell and taste of feeds. The sense of taste in dairy cattle is well developed. They can recognize the five basic tastes of sweet, bitter, salty, sour, and umami. Therefore, identifying flavor preferences of dairy calves may help to stimulate and improve the consumption of calf starter.

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