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Evonik Animal Nutrition

Potential for 20 % improvement in efficiency of protein use for milk production by amino acid balancing

Published: September 17, 2019
By: Claudia Parys
Research conducted at the US Dairy Forage Research Center in Madison (WI) has shown the potential for improving milk nitrogen (N) efficiency by more than 20 % through balancing amino acids and reducing crude protein levels fed. Milk nitrogen efficiency is a measure of how much of the protein (hence nitrogen) fed appears in milk versus being wasted and posing environmental challenges.
Experimental Design
The forage base consisted of alfalfa silage (21 % of DM) and corn silage (28 % of DM). Rolled high moisture (HM) corn was the sole grain and protein supplementation was from soybean meal (SBM) and roasted whole soybeans. Soy hulls (5.8 % of DM) were fed in all treatments to avoid excessive starch intake and potential acidosis problems. Treatments with 24 cows were 18.6, 17.3, 16.1 and 14.8 % crude protein (CP). The highest CP diet had no supplemental methionine, but as CP was reduced in the other diets by replacing SBM with HM corn, Mepron® was fed to maintain methionine supply.
Effects on Nitrogen Use
As shown in the Table below, nitrogen and therefore crude protein was used more efficiently as diet protein declined. This occurred as a consequence of lower N intake, higher milk yield and higher milk protein yield for the 17.3 and 16.1 % CP diets. The lowest CP did not support adequate production and therefore cannot be recommended for commercial use.
The 17.3 and 16.1 % CP diets not only supported higher production but substantially reduced N excreted as urinary urea. Nitrogen in this form is the most likely to volatize and to contribute to air pollution.
Moving from an 18.6 % CP ration to 17.3 or 16.1 % CP improved the efficiency of capture of dietary N in milk by 14 and 21 %, respectively. These changes also reduced the N lost as urea in urine by 28 and 44 %, respectively. This represents a substantial opportunity for dairies to be more environmentally responsible without paying a production penalty.
Results from this experiment indicate that Mepron® plus HM corn can be used to replace part of the CP that is normally fed as soybean meal. By supplementation with Mepron®, it was possible to reduce dietary CP from 18.6 to as little as 16.1 % CP without losing production of milk and milk components. Reducing dietary CP to 14.8 % depressed milk production and resulted in mobilization of body protein, which could not be compensated for by Mepron® supplementation.
Potential for 20 % improvement in efficiency of protein use for milk production by amino acid balancing - Image 1
Bottom Line
Amino acid balancing of dairy rations represents a viable approach to meet the challenges of environmental sustainability and production economics. The highest N efficiency, with no loss in performance, was observed in the Mepron®-supplemented diet containing 16.1 % CP.

Broderick GA, Stevenson MJ, Patton RA, Lobos NE, Olmos Colmenero JJ (2008): Effect of supplementing rumen-protected methionine on production and nitrogen excretion in lactating dairy cows. J Dairy Sci 91: 1092-1102

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Claudia Parys
Evonik Animal Nutrition
Influencers who recommended :
Victor Naranjo Haro
Brian Sloan
3 de mayo de 2020
In a follow up experiment with the same team at USDA Wisconsin, a Negative Control treatment was also included to allow a better assessment of what part of the improvements in N-efficiency were simply due to reducing N intake and what part were due to an improvement in performance through amino acid balancing. Effect of feeding different sources of rumen-protected methionine on milk production and N-utilization in lactating cows : Chen et al J. Dairy Sci. 94 : 1978-1988 Lowering CP content in the ration from 16.8% to 15.6% without any attempt to amino acid balance, did not reduce milk protein but did reduce milk fat. N-efficiency (Milk N/N intake %) was improved from 30.2 to 32.4 (+7.3%). When Smartamine M was added to the 15.6% ration to respect a metabolizable LYS to MET ratio according to NRC 2001 of 3 to 1, daily milk fat yield was improved by 200 grams and milk protein by 90 grams, pushing the N-efficiency up to 34.2 (+13.2% vs the 16.9% CP ration) Judicious use of Amino acid balancing to lower ration CP levels can improve performance and improve efficiency of N use essential in our goals of sustainable production. The objective should be to reach at least 40% of intake N being converted into productive N
6 de mayo de 2021

Thank you very much)
When formulating a dairy cow's ration, Lys and Met are extremely important for milk production.

3 de marzo de 2021
Thanks, The ratio of Lys to Met is important in milk production in formulating dairy cow diet
Shahzaib Shakeel
28 de febrero de 2021
Dear Claudia, Hope you would be fine. Just wanted to know if you have conducted comparative trials of Mepron with other bypass amino acids products available in the market and what were the results if you have done any trials? No doubt Mepron is an excellent product but there are other products available in market that are equally good and cost effective as well. Would you please like to shed light on that too. Regards
Hailu Mazengia Yimam
18 de noviembre de 2020
John abudu
30 de octubre de 2020
Luis Cardo Rodriguez
20 de octubre de 2020

Methionine has many metabolic roles, so it is not just protein in milk. In any case if you are interested in raising your milk protein you have to consider also the metabolizable Lysine, the rapport between metabolizable Lys and metabolizable Met and the quantity of metabolizable Lys & Met /Mcal ME.

A rough guideline would be a % over total metabolizable protein of 6,8-7% Lys and 2.40-2,70% Met (depending if your aim is % of protein in milk or milk yield), but it is as important or more to supply 1,17 gr metabolizable Met/Mcal ME and 3,15gr metabolizable Lys/Mcal ME

Pawan Sharma
Progressive Dairy Solutions Ltd
19 de octubre de 2020
Methionine required if cow produce less than 20 Ltrs milk per day and what was the right douses of Methionine for 35 Ltrs Milking cow.
28 de abril de 2020
well done
shimon carmi
14 de octubre de 2019

What was the performance of the cows?

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