Liberate More Energy from Corn & Get More Milk
Insta-Pro blog readers will understand the importance of dietary energy, that which is usable by animals for productive purposes, and that processing, and especially high-shear dry extrusion, can allow for more efficient use of each unit mass of ingredients.
But what does that really mean? Without getting into physics or the laws of thermodynamics, feed energy, which is measured in heat units, is derived from the diets of animals, and directly affects how much, and the quality of, human food that is produced by animals.
A great example of what this means practically can be found in this publication. When dairy calves were fed whole milk, a certain percentage of the protein in the whole milk was retained and used for growth. However, when additional sources of energy (sugar or fat) were added to the whole milk, even more of the milk protein was retained; the calves could use more of the amino acids in milk protein for growth.
Similarly, when dairy cows are producing milk, a certain amount of useful dietary energy is required. It takes about 0.74 megacalories of net energy of lactation to make 1 kg of milk. In a blog post that will be released soon, based on data from Dr. Harvatine’s lab at Penn State University, high-shear dry extruded corn was shown to improve milk production much more than cows fed steam-flaked corn – look for that in the coming weeks.
What this data can do for us here is to serve to calculate the amount of usable energy liberated by these two methods for processing corn. According to Penn State, steam-flaked corn has a range of net energy of lactation values – I used 1.69 Mcal/kg. and the value of 1.69 for steam-flaked corn net energy, the following was calculated:
You can see quite clearly that high-shear dry extrusion from Insta-Pro caused the release of about 9% more energy versus steam-flaked corn – energy that resulted in more milk production.
Fundamentally, high-shear dry extrusion can liberate more energy from corn, allowing dairy cows to be more productive.
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