Fats & Fatty Acids for Ruminants: a Revolution in Knowledge and Approaches

Published on: 10/01/2019
Author/s : Alfredo J. Escribano, DVM, PhD. / NUTRION Internacional.

Functionality: Behind fatty acids, specific functions remain In the recent years, we have observed a great torrent of new knowledge regarding fatty acids functions and role in improving products’ quality. Therefore, nutritionists are already formulating taking into account both quantities and proportions of different fatty acids.   Productivity & Profitability: C16:0, trending to...

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Joe Magadi Joe Magadi
October 1, 2019

Dear Afredo,

I very much agree with your view points. As you have argued, we need to focus more on the attributes of fat as source fatty acids essential to animal and human nutrition, health, performance and wellbeing. Apart from C16:0 and PUFAs, oleic acid is being recognised as having positive effective on total fat digestibility and cow body condition. The challenge though remains one of minimising ruminal alteration of the fatty acids so that sufficient quantities can be delivered to targeted animal tissues and livestock products. In this regard, there are now available in commercial quantities calcium soap fortified with omega fatty acids (EPA and DHA) which can avoid rumen biohydrogenation to a significant level. There is also the option of vegetable fibre matrix encapsulation which has been demonstrated to achieve a transfer efficiency of around 16% of omega 3 fatty acids into milk from diet.

Viacheslav Kovalevski Viacheslav Kovalevski
Agricultural Engineer
July 24, 2020
Thank you very much Alfredo for a very interesting article. However, it is not entirely clear to me how fatty acids, in particular palmetinic acid C16: 0, which is almost completely intertwined in the rumen fluid, can affect the methane emission in the rumen. I am interested in the effects of medium chain fatty acids on rumen fermentation and methane production. If you have dealt with this issue, you could not comment on the results of your research on this issue.
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