Rumen Protected Fats What are they and why are they important?
Animals need fat as part of a balanced diet with other nutrients.
Fat is the highest energy nutrient available (around 2.5 times higher than cereals).
Diets based on forage and cereals may only have around 3.5% fat, but requirements are much higher.
Liquid oils or high-oil by-products lead to an ‘oil slick’ in the rumen.
The sticky oil physically coats the fibre particles.
More fat = More energy and essential nutrients = More efficient animals!
By-pass fats How does it work?
Calcium salt granules, like Megalac, are insoluble in the rumen and allow key unsaturated fatty acids (such as oleic acid; C18:1) to pass through to the small intestine for digestion and use by the animal.
Fat prills, like Mega-Fat 88, have melting points higher than rumen temperature so they remain solid and pass to the small intestine for digestion.
Great sources of milk fat-boosting palmitic acid (C16:0) for the animal.
The sticky oil coats the fibre particles Why does this matter?
This reduces fibre digestibility and milk fat.
Fats are composed of different fatty acid building blocks.
The fatty acids present in these oils kill fibre-digesting rumen bacteria, further reducing fibre digestion.
Fatty acids in feed can also be converted into different fatty acids in the rumen.
Which causes milk fat depression.