Inoculants and dry matter recovery: What’s at stake?

Posted on February 13, 2012 in Dairy Performance
By Chris Wacek-Driver “Quality forages…where sound nutrition starts” has become a founding principle for Vita Plus consultants as we work with you to put up high quality forages. A key to reaching that goal is improving aerobic stability by inoculating with the world-leading Lactobacillus buchneri 40788.  Benefits of this inoculant include less heating, fewer yeasts and molds, improved aerobic stability at feedout and in the TMR, reduced spoilage, and improved intake and performance. You may have heard a rumor that L. buchneri 40788 has a negative effect on dry matter recovery.  Not true.  Research conducted with L. buchneri 40788 has shown that the loss of dry matter during fermentation/storage is virtually the same as in untreated silage.  In 26 published trials comparing untreated and L.buchneri-treated forages, dry matter loss was minimal even at very high levels for L. buchneri addition. The potential for sparing greater spoilage losses during storage and feedout far outweighs the small losses that might be incurred as a result of the fermentation.  Total DM losses from aerobic stability issues can be as high as 25 percent compared to about 4 percent from fermentation losses (Zimmer et al.). Keep in mind, L. buchneri 40788 is hard at work improving aerobic stability, but it does not strongly contribute to the upfront fermentation.  That’s why Vita Plus has chosen to pair L. buchneri with the upfront homolactic bacterium Pediococcus pentosaceus 12455.  By combining the power of two, Crop-N-Rich Stage 2 will protect your forages during the upfront fermentation (P. pentosaceus) and through improved aerobic stability in storage and at feedout (L. buchneri). We see a lot of claims out there about available forage inoculants.  Need help digging through all the information?  Your Vita Plus consultant can help you evaluate all the claims and see how they stack up against the research-proven Crop-N-Rich Buchneri and Crop-N-Rich Stage 2.  We know your farm is not identical to others and we are committed to working with you to find the best forage solutions for your individual operation.  Because, just like you, we know quality forages are where sound nutrition starts. Research available upon request. About the author: Chris Wacek-Driver is the Vita Plus forage program manager.  She grew up on a farm outside of Denmark, Wis. and attended the University of Wisconsin-River Falls where she earned her bachelor’s degree in dairy science with an ag business minor.  She went on to receive her master’s degree from UW-Madison.  She conducted her research focusing on forage quality at the USDA Forage Center under Dr. Larry Satter.  In particular, she studied forage fermentation, the role of microbial and enzyme additives, and their effects on dairy animal performance.  Wacek-Driver has been a Vita Plus employee owner for the past 21 years and worked in dairy technical services prior to her current role.  She has a passion for working with dairy producers to help them with on-farm feed inventory, feed management, forage fermentation and production, and dairy nutrition.  She resides on a 240-acre farm along the bluffs of the Mississippi River in western Wisconsin.

Category: Dairy Performance
Forage inoculants