Independent trials in the USA and widespread producer experience suggest feeding a fermented yeast culture to high yielding dairy cows improves overall feed utilisation by up to 4%, delivering increased yield and butterfat benefits as a result.
Dr Zaugg on farm (left) during his UK visit.
Speaking to UK dairy farmers at a series of meetings organised by Rumenco (22-24 October), independent US nutritionist Dr Ueli Zaugg explained that more than 50% of American milk producers now feed a yeast culture.
“Most consistent results in the United States are seen from feeding a fermented yeast culture, which is more stable than a live yeast cell product that quickly breaks down in the rumen environment or even during storage in adverse conditions. Fermented yeast incorporates extra-cellular metabolites that act as fertiliser for the rumen bugs. These nutritional metabolites – such as peptides, oligosaccharides and organic acids – stimulate the rumen bug population, particularly the important fibre-digesting bacteria that are often challenged in the rumen,” Dr Zaugg explained.
Dr Zaugg highlighted detailed independent US trial work showing Diamond V XP consistently delivering a 25% increase in rumen bacterial populations after introduction to the dairy cow ration.
“XP yeast essentially feeds the rumen rather than the cow, stabilising rumen pH and stimulating the bacterial population to work more effectively. The result is improved feed digestibility and a higher dry matter intake, particularly in the transition period.
“After introducing XP fermented yeast to the lactating cow ration producers usually see a 0.1-0.2% uplift in milk butterfat as the first obvious benefit, but increased feed utilisation of up to 4% also leads to longer term benefits in yield and fertility. Yield increases of around a litre per cow per day can be expected, as well as more cows in calf. Dry cows also benefit with less ketosis and fatty liver syndrome the end result,” he said.
Dr Zaugg maintains that around 60% of US milk producers feeding a yeast culture have now made the switch to XP yeast, simply because of the extensive amount of positive dairy cow research work.
“The XP yeast manufacturer Diamond V has conducted more live animal research than any other yeast culture manufacturer. The data show it delivering consistent results on farm, where it counts – in producers’ pockets.”
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