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.
Sugar beet is a temperate climate crop grown mainly for production of sucrose. Beet pulp, the main co-product obtained during the process, is a common ingredient in dairy cow diets. Beet pulp is a good nonforage fiber source with high levels of digestible fiber and pectic substances.
The Valencian Community is one of the main producers of rice and citrus in Spain. Rice straw (residue from rice paddy fields) is usually eliminated by controlled burning of crops. On the other hand, residues of citrus fruit pruning are also eliminated by burning or shredding in green and subsequent incorporation into the soil.
Soybean meal, canola meal, and corn distillers’ grains are good sources of protein for dairy cows. Since they have different rumen undegradable protein (RUP) content and amino acid profile, feeding diets that include two or three protein sources is the best strategy for covering amino acids requirements in high producing cows.
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…
Phosphorus is an essential macromineral involved in several biological processes such as bone mineralization, energy transition, and acid-base buffer systems. During lactation, the NRC 2001 guidelines recommends to feed diets with 0.3 – 0.4% of phosphorus in a dry matter (DM) basis.
Corn (Zea mays L.) is nowadays the main cereal grain included in dairy cow diets in the US. Nonetheless, the cold weather of the west of Canada and some of the European countries is not adequate for cultivating corn, being wheat (Triticum aestivum L.), the main cereal grain produced in those areas.
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).
Silage was defined as the product formed when grass or other material of sufficiently high moisture content, liable to spoilage by aerobic microorganism, is stored aerobiologically. Belgian researchers assessed the potential of four additives to improve fermentability and nutrient composition during the ensiling process of silages.
Faba beans (Vicia faba) is a grain legume that may be considered as dual-purpose feed for protein and starch contents. Due to its high protein (28 – 32% dry matter; DM) and starch contents (40% DM), faba beans can replace both protein meals and cereal grains in dairy cow diets.