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The effect of calcium salts of fatty acids added to the feed of dairy cows on the fatty acid composition of milk fat


The effect of calcium salts of fatty acids added to the feed of dairy cows on the fatty acid composition of milk fat



Meijeritieteellinen Aikakauskirja 47(1): 1-9



The Food Research Institute and the Institute of Animal Production conducted a comparative feeding experiment, in which cows were given feed mixed with calcium salts of fatty acids (feeding group A) and untreated rapeseed oil (group B). Five per cent of fat was added to the feed mixtures, which raised their fat contents of 8.0% and 8.2%. The study focused on the effects of the feed on the fatty acid composition of milk fats, and special attention was paid to the quantities of trans and conjugated fatty acids. The Research and Development Centre at the Valio Finnish Co-operative Dairies' Association studied the effects of fat additions in fermentation experiments carried out in artificial rumen. The palmitic acid level, C16:0, fell in test group A, (addition of Ca salt) from 30.67% to 27.4%, and in test group B from 30.05% to 25.51%. The stearic acid level, C18:0, was 9.52% in feeding group A and 12.68% in feeding group B. The elaidic acid level, C18:1 .DELTA.9T, was 4.00% in group A and 2.14% in group B. The oleic acid level, C18:1 .DELTA.9C, in group A fell during the test and was 17.74%. In group B the oleic acid level rose during the test to 22.78%. The conjugated fatty acids level rose from 0.27% to 0.89% in group A, but in group B the rise was only from 0.32% to 0.53%. The statistically very significant increase in the proportions of trans and conjugated fatty acids, and the decrease in the proportion of stearic and oleic acids indicate that feeding of calcium salts of fatty acids has a negative effect on the composition of the milk fat produced. This finding is also supported by the fermentation experiments carried out with artificial rumen. In contrast, feeding of untreated oily fats changes the composition of the milk fat in the desired direction, as it clearly increases the proportion of unsaturated fatty acids in milk fat.

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