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Open AccessArticle

Effects of Replacing Ensiled-Alfalfa with Fresh-Alfalfa on Dynamic Fermentation Characteristics, Chemical Compositions, and Protein Fractions in Fermented Total Mixed Ration with Different Additives

1
College of Grassland Science and Technology, China Agricultural University, Beijing 100193, China
2
School of Life Sciences, Lanzhou University, Lanzhou 730000, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Eduarda Molina-Alcaide
Animals 2021, 11(2), 572; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani11020572
Received: 23 January 2021 / Revised: 16 February 2021 / Accepted: 17 February 2021 / Published: 22 February 2021
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable Animal Nutrition and Feeding)
Alfalfa (Medicago sativa) is commonly used as a high-quality protein source in fermented total mixed ration (FTMR) for ruminants. This study evaluated the fermentation characteristics, chemical compositions, and protein fractions of FTMR using fresh-alfalfa as the main ingredients replacing ensiled-alfalfa. The results showed that fresh-alfalfa FTMR exhibited a similar pH, propionic acid content and neutral detergent fiber, nonprotein, and variable to slow protein and indigestible protein levels in comparison to ensiled-alfalfa FTMR. Therefore, the use of fresh-alfalfa as a main ingredient in FTMR is promising.
Alfalfa (Medicago sativa) is one of the high protein ingredients of fermented total mixed ration (FTMR). Additionally, FTMR is widely used to satisfy the nutrition requirements of animals. This study was conducted to confirm the fermentation characteristics, chemical compositions and protein fractions changes when replacing ensiled-alfalfa with fresh-alfalfa in FTMR with additives. Three additives were separately applied to fresh-alfalfa total mixed ration (TMR) and ensiled-alfalfa TMR, including molasses (MOL), Lactobacillus plantarum (LP) and MOL plus LP (MOL+LP). The same volume of distilled water was sprayed onto the prepared TMR as performed for the control (CK). Each treatment included 18 repetitions and opened 3 repetitions at each fermenting day (1, 3, 7, 15, 30 and 60 d). The results showed that fresh-alfalfa FTMR (F-FTMR) exhibited slight changes in the fermentation characteristics during the first 7 d and showed similar trends in terms of the pH and organic acids content to ensiled-alfalfa FTMR (E-FTMR). The lactic acid contents of F-FTMR were significantly lower than those of E-FTMR at 60 d fermentation and the ammonia nitrogen contents were lower than E-FTMR during the entire fermenting period. The crude protein of the F-FTMR was enhanced after 60 d of fermenting. F-FTMR supplemented with MOL+LP exhibited a lower nonprotein nitrogen content, variable to slow protein and indigestible protein contents, and higher fast degradable protein and true protein degraded intermediately contents at 60 d fermenting, indicating that it effectively inhibited protein degradation. View Full-Text
Keywords: fresh-alfalfa; Lactobacillus plantarum; fermented total mixed ratio; fermentation profile; protein degradation fresh-alfalfa; Lactobacillus plantarum; fermented total mixed ratio; fermentation profile; protein degradation
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MDPI and ACS Style

Gao, R.; Luo, Y.; Xu, S.; Wang, M.; Sun, Z.; Wang, L.; Yu, Z. Effects of Replacing Ensiled-Alfalfa with Fresh-Alfalfa on Dynamic Fermentation Characteristics, Chemical Compositions, and Protein Fractions in Fermented Total Mixed Ration with Different Additives. Animals 2021, 11, 572. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani11020572

AMA Style

Gao R, Luo Y, Xu S, Wang M, Sun Z, Wang L, Yu Z. Effects of Replacing Ensiled-Alfalfa with Fresh-Alfalfa on Dynamic Fermentation Characteristics, Chemical Compositions, and Protein Fractions in Fermented Total Mixed Ration with Different Additives. Animals. 2021; 11(2):572. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani11020572

Chicago/Turabian Style

Gao, Run; Luo, Ying; Xu, Shengyang; Wang, Musen; Sun, Zhiqiang; Wang, Lei; Yu, Zhu. 2021. "Effects of Replacing Ensiled-Alfalfa with Fresh-Alfalfa on Dynamic Fermentation Characteristics, Chemical Compositions, and Protein Fractions in Fermented Total Mixed Ration with Different Additives" Animals 11, no. 2: 572. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani11020572

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