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Milk fatty acid profile from cows fed with mixed rations and different access time to pastureland during early lactation

Barca, J., Carriquiry, M., Olazabal, L., Fajardo, M., Chilibroste, P., Meikle, A.
Journal of animal physiology and animal nutrition 2018 v.102 no.3 pp. 620-629
Holstein, conjugated linoleic acid, dairy cows, diet, early lactation, fatty acid composition, gas chromatography, grazing, mass spectrometry, milk, milk fatty acids, pastures, stearic acid, total mixed rations, vaccenic acid
Milk fatty acid (FA) profiles were determined in Holstein cows (n = 27) fed total mixed rations (TMR) ad libitum (G0) or diet composed by TMR (50% dry matter [DM] offered) plus grazing of pasture with 6 hr of access time to paddock in one session (G1) or 9 hr in two sessions (G2) at 45 days in milk (DIM). Moreover, milk FA was determined at 65 DIM when G0 cows turned out to G1 diet without adaptation period (Post‐G0), G1 remained as controls. Milk FA was quantified using gas chromatography and mass spectrometry. Preformed FA at 45 DIM was greater (+27%) for G2 than G0 cows (p < .05). Stearic acid (C18:0) was 30% greater for G2 cows (p < .05). De novo FA was lowest for G2 cows (p < .05). Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) did not differ (p < .12), while vaccenic acid (C18:1trans) was twofold greater for grazing treatments (p < .01). Linolenic acid [C18:3(n‐3)] was greatest for G2 and lowest for G0 cows (p < .01). Omega 6 FA was greater for G0 than grazing cows, mainly due to linoleic acid [18:2cis(n‐6); p < .05]. These results determined that n‐6/n‐3 ratio was almost threefold greater for G0 than grazing cows (p < .001). When diet of G0 cows changed to include pasture (Post‐G0), preformed FA increased (p < .05), explained mainly by the increase (p < .05) of stearic (C18:0) and C18:1trans, while de novo FA tended to decrease (p < .1). Moreover, the amount of CLA and C18:3(n‐3) tended to increase (p < .1) in Post‐G0 cows. Offering 50% of dietary DM from pasture modified milk FA profile in early lactation potentially beneficial for human health. When TMR‐fed cows were turned out to 50% pasture, milk FA profile reflected dietary change without need of an adaptation period.