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The relation of the carotenoid and vitamin A content of summer milk to the carotenoid content of the pasture herbage

Hibbs, J.W.; Krauss, W.E.; Monroe, C.F.

Jour Dairy Sci 32(11): 355-360

1949


DOI: 10.3168/jds.s0022-0302(49)92144-x
Accession: 013894148

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Fluctuations in the vit. A and carotenoid content of summer milk produced by 3 groups of cows was related to the fluctuations in the carotenoid content of the pasture herbage consumed during 3 pasture seasons. The 3 groups included cows pastured on bluegrass, one group with and one without supplemental hay, and another on legume mixtures, without supplemental hay. The data illustrate the following: (a) A closer relation exists between pasture carotenoids and milk carotenoids than between pasture carotenoids and milk vitamin A. (b) After the initial rise following the beginning of the pasture season, the fluctuations in milk carotenoids follow the changes in pasture carotenoids more closely when the pasture carotenoids level is below about 250 [mu]g./g. than when it is higher, indicating a maximum response at this level. (c) Permanent bluegrass pasture, under weather and management conditions which favor rapid growth, often is equally as good a source of carotenoids as is a pasture consisting of legume mixtures. The superiority of legumes is evident during periods of drought.

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