Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Adisseo's Pre-Symposium a Huge Success at the 2012 Florida Nutrition Conference!

January 31st, 2012 - Gainesville, Florida

Adisseo sponsored the Pre-Symposium at the 2012 Florida Ruminant Nutrition Symposium. The general theme was "Improving Efficiency of Nitrogen Utilization by Dairy Cows". We were privileged to have a great line-up of speakers. Below you'll find highlights from each speaker:

 Larry E. Chase - Professor of Dairy Cattle Nutrition, Cornell University

 "Impacts of Feeding Lower Crude Protein Rations on Dairy Farms"

Dr. Chase challenged the audience by presenting results from commercial dairies feeding very low crude protein (CP) diets without losing milk while saving costs, thus improving the bottom line. He argued that dairy producers should consider lowering crude protein levels in rations for two primary reasons. One is to improve profitability by increasing the efficiency of converting feed nitrogen (N) intake to milk N output while at least maintaining milk production (which reduces purchased feed cost). A second reason is that feeding lower crude protein rations decreases environmental excretion of N and lowers ammonia emissions. He demonstrated that on many commercial farms there is an opportunity to lower ration CP by 0.5 to 1.5 units with minimal risk of lowering milk production.

Furthermore, Dr. Chase made the point that instead of using the term crude protein, nutritionists should be looking at the rumen degradable protein (RDP) and rumen undegradable protein (RUP). In fact, dairy cattle do not have a CP requirement but do need absorbable amino acids to meet requirements to support lactation, pregnancy, maintenance and growth.

• Click here to view/download the presentation.
• Click here to view/download the technical paper.

 Michael E. Van Amburgh - Associate Professor, Department of Animal Science, Cornell University

 "Nitrogen Efficiency and Balancing for RDP and RUP with Reference to the CNCPS and NRC”

In his presentation, Dr. Van Amburgh detailed the latest changes implemented in the biology of the ration formulation models used to design rations for the lactating cattle. Improving the efficiency of feed nitrogen (N) use has become a central component of the ration formulation process primarily to reduce feed costs and also to be more environmentally friendly. In the past, dairy rations were over formulated with excess N, which was not used by the cow (instead, that excess N was released, causing environmental issues and costing money to the producer without increasing milk production).

New data are available that better describe the characterization of feed fractionation and these data along with changes in available models suggest that more protein has been available to lactating cattle than previously considered. Dr. Van Amburgh went further explaining that progress continues to be made in balancing lactating dairy cow rations for Amino Acids.

• Click here to view/download the presentation.
• Click here to view/download the technical paper.

 Dr. Chuck Schwab - Professor Emeritus of Animal Sciences, University of New Hampshire

 "The principles of balancing lactating cow diets for amino acids and their impact on efficiency of N utilization."

Dr. Schwab dug deeper into the current knowledge of feeding cows - he went down to the Amino Acid (AA) level. Cows require AA and that's what the nutritionists aim at balancing for in their rations. Commercial sources of rumen-protected methionine (Met) supplements continue to increase and numerous rumen-protected lysine (Lys) supplements have been introduced within the last couple of years. All of these are designed to make it easier to meet Lys and Met requirements without oversupplying the other AA. Dairy nutritionists are also becoming more comfortable with precise balancing of rations for rumen degradable protein (RDP) and rumen undegradable protein (RUP) and lowering RUP which is possible when balancing AA.

Dr. Schwab reviewed current knowledge regarding limiting AA and their optimum concentrations in metabolizable protein (MP). He described feeding strategies to better match AA supply with AA requirements and he reviewed studies that highlight the importance of balancing diets for Lys and Met and their effect on the efficiency of N utilization.

• Click here to view/download the presentation.
• Click here to view/download the technical paper.

It's clear to me that nutritionists will be looking beyond crude protein to design a ration for lactating cows. We now have the tools to apply the concepts developed by the scientific community in the past 40 years. Those nutritionists that already practice the concepts have seen great results!