Effects of a commercial fermentation byproduct or urea on milk production, rumen metabolism, and omasal flow of nutrients in lactating dairy cattle

S. W. Fessenden, A. Foskolos, T. J. Hackmann, D. A. Ross, E. Block, M. E. Van Amburgh*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (SciVal)
103 Downloads (Pure)


The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of a fermentation byproduct on rumen fermentation and microbial yield in high producing lactating dairy cattle. Eight ruminally cannulated multiparous Holstein cows averaging (mean ± standard deviation) 60 ± 10 d in milk and 637 ± 38 kg of body weight were assigned to 1 of 2 treatment sequences in a switchback design. Treatment diets contained (dry matter basis) 44% corn silage, 13% alfalfa silage, 12% ground corn, and 31% premix containing either a control mix of urea and wheat middlings (CON) or a commercial fermentation byproduct meal (Fermenten, Arm and Hammer Animal Nutrition, Princeton, NJ) at 3% diet inclusion rate (EXP). Diets were formulated to be isonitrogenous and isocaloric, with similar levels of neutral detergent fiber and starch. The trial consisted of three 28-d experimental periods, where each period consisted of 21 d of diet adaptation and 7 d of data and sample collection. Omasal nutrient flows were determined using a triple-marker technique and double-labeled 15 N 15 N-urea. The EXP diet provided 18 g/d more nonammonia N versus the CON diet, representing 3.0% of total N intake. Energy-corrected milk yield (41.7 and 43.1 kg/d for CON and EXP, respectively), milk fat, and protein yield and content did not differ between treatments. Total dry matter intake was similar between treatments (25.5 and 26.4 kg/d for CON and EXP, respectively). Ammonia N concentration and pool size in the rumen was greater in cows fed the EXP diet. No differences were observed in rumen or total-tract dry matter, organic matter, or neutral detergent fiber digestibility. Ruminal degradation of feed N was 15% lower in cows fed EXP diets, resulting in differences in omasal N flows. Results demonstrated the fermentation byproduct meal had a sparing effect on degradable feed protein, but did not increase microbial N flow from the rumen.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3023-3035
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Dairy Science
Issue number4
Early online date13 Mar 2019
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019


  • Cornell Net Carbohydrate and Protein System
  • Fermenten
  • microbial protein synthesis
  • omasal sampling
  • soluble protein
  • Body Weight
  • Dietary Fiber/metabolism
  • Diet/veterinary
  • Lactation
  • Ammonia/metabolism
  • Rumination, Digestive
  • Cattle
  • Silage
  • Starch/metabolism
  • Female
  • Nutrients
  • Urea/pharmacology
  • Milk
  • Rumen/metabolism
  • Zea mays
  • Medicago sativa
  • Fermentation
  • Omasum/metabolism
  • Animals
  • Animal Feed


Dive into the research topics of 'Effects of a commercial fermentation byproduct or urea on milk production, rumen metabolism, and omasal flow of nutrients in lactating dairy cattle'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this