Effect of dietary seaweed (Ascophyllum nodosum) supplementation on milk mineral concentrations, transfer efficiency, and hematological parameters in lactating Holstein cows

E. E. Newton, K. Theodoridou*, M. Terré, S. Huws, P. Ray, C. K. Reynolds, N. K. Prat, D. Sabrià, S. Stergiadis*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
37 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

This study investigated the effect of feeding seaweed (Ascophyllum nodosum) to dairy cows on milk mineral concentrations, feed-to-milk mineral transfer efficiencies and hematological parameters. Lactating Holstein cows (n = 46) were allocated to one of 2 diets (n = 23 each): (i) control (CON; without seaweed), and (ii) seaweed (SWD; replacing 330 g/d of dried corn meal in CON with 330 g/d dried A. nodosum). All cows were fed the CON diet for 4 weeks before the experiment (adaptation period); and animals were then fed the experimental diets for 9 weeks. Samples included sequential 3-week composite feed samples, a composite milk sample on the last day of each week, and a blood sample at the end of the study. Data were statistically analyzed using a linear mixed effects model with diet, week, and their interaction as fixed factors; cow (nested within diet) as a random factor and data collected on the last day of the adaptation period as covariates. Feeding SWD increased milk concentrations of Mg (+6.6 mg/kg), P (+56 mg/kg), and I (+1720 μg/kg). It also reduced transfer efficiency of Ca, Mg, P, K, Mn, and Zn, and increased transfer efficiency of Mo. Feeding SWD marginally reduced milk protein concentrations while there was no effect of SWD feeding on cows' hematological parameters. Feeding A. nodosum increased milk I concentrations, which can be beneficial when feed I concentration is limited or in demographics or populations with increased risk of I deficiency (e.g., female adolescents, pregnant women, nursing mothers). However, care should also be taken when feeding SWD to dairy cows because, in the present study, milk I concentrations were particularly high and could result in I intakes that pose a health risk for children consuming milk.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6880-6893
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Dairy Science
Volume106
Issue number10
Early online date18 May 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 01 Oct 2023

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