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Fernando Díaz

Sainfoin (Onobrychis viciifolia) is a perennial legume crop grown for centuries in Europe and the Middle East. It is named commonly “healthy hay” largely due to its condensed tannins (CT) content which inhibits protein degradation in the rumen, thereby minimizing the incidence of ruminal tympany (bloat). Additionally, sainfoin has anthelmintic activity against intestinal parasites.

In recent years there has been a renewed interest in the crop because the presence of CT in the forage has a positive effect on the reduction of ammonia and enteric methane emission from ruminants.

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