Lactation performance and amino acid utilization of cows fed increasing amounts of reduced-fat dried distillers grains with solubles

K. Mjoun,* K. F. Kalscheur,* A. R. Hippen,* D. J. Schingoethe,* and D. E. Little†

* Dairy Science Department, South Dakota State university, Brookings 57007
† DairyNet inc., Brookings, SD 57006

The use of a solvent-extraction process that removes corn oil from distillers grains produces a reduced-fat coproduct (RFDG). To determine the optimal concentration of RFDG in mid-lactation diets, 22 multiparous and 19 primiparous Holstein cows were used in a completely randomized design for 8 wk, including a 2-wk covariate period. The RFDG was included at 0, 10, 20, and 30% of the diet on a dry matter basis, replacing soybean feedstuffs. Increasing RFDG in diets had no effect on dry matter intake (23.1 kg/d) or milk production (35.0 kg/d). Milk fat percentage increased linearly from 3.18 to 3.72% as RFDG increased from 0 to 30% of the diet. Similarly, milk fat yield tended to increase linearly from 1.08 to 1.32 kg/d. Milk protein percentage (2.99, 3.06, 3.13, and 2.99% for diets with RFDG from 0 to 30%) responded quadratically, whereas protein yield was not affected by treatment. Milk urea N decreased linearly from 15.8 to 13.1 mg/dL. The efficiency of N utilization for milk production was not affected by including RFDG (26.1%), whereas the efficiency of milk production (energy-corrected milk divided by dry matter intake) tended to increase linearly with increasing RFDG in the diet. Similarly, concentrations of plasma glucose increased linearly. Arterial Lys decreased linearly from 66.0 to 44.8 µM/L, whereas arterial Met increased linearly from 16.5 to 29.3 µM/L. Arteriovenous difference of Lys decreased linearly from 42.6 to 32.5 µM/L, whereas that of Met was unaffected. The extraction of Lys by the mammary gland increased linearly from 64.3 to 72.2%, whereas that of Met decreased linearly from 71.6 to 42.7%. Feeding up to 30% of RFDG in a mid-lactation diet supported lactation performance similarly to cows fed the soybean protein-based diet (0% RFDG).

Keywords: reduced-fat dried distillers grain with solubles, amino acid, lactating dairy cow, blood metabolite