The Urea Cascade in Dairying

It’s the urea, folks…..

We have a slug of serious problems in dairying that we didn’t have 40 years ago: reliance on supplemental feeds and antibiotics, poor conception rates, calf scours, high milk urea (MU), nitrate leachate and a stink profit margin. We’re spending fertiliser money creating ‘funny protein’ grass that burns out our cows at 2.5 lactations, pollutes our rivers, propels us in the direction of very expensive barns, alienates consumers and reduces the very healing qualities of milk fat that the world desperately needs and will eventually value. We’ve gone beyond shooting ourselves in the foot. Despite the temporary illusion created by this wonderful dairy payout…the muzzle is aimed higher off the ground.

We CAN grow larger volumes of high soluble solids, complete protein, diverse species pastures that beat the pants off any competition. We can do it by driving our fertiliser programs with lime, key trace elements, humic acid granules and judicious use of foliar urea. All at lower cost than our present reliance on 200 + kg/ ha/ yr of neat urea and certainly at less cost to our environment and health. And it can be done at Olsen P’s below 20. There is no need to continue large applications of cadmium and fluoride tainted Super Phosphate to maintain Olsen P ratings that are already through the roof. Our fertiliser cooperative executives are selling us down the river because there is no margin in lime and they need the high turnover figures to justify their salaries. Sorry, guys. It’s time to call a spade a spade. All of these band-aids we ‘need’ to apply because we grow stink, urea-addicted grass makes everyone else money except us. Farmers are the patsies in all this.

The first illusion that must fall away is the thinking that says agriculture can successfully function as a chemical system based on petroleum inputs. No, it is a complex biological system governed by microbes which need to be fed the full range of macro and micro-nutrients in their most biology-friendly forms.

Urea as a Crude Tool

Using urea as the basis for pasture growth creates high levels of nitrate nitrogen in the forage. We’ve all been assured that we grow ‘good’ pasture with a crude protein content around 20%. The international standard for ideal pasture crude protein content is 16%. What that figure really tells us is that we have excessive levels of nitrate in our grass, not real, complete protein. These excessive levels of nitrate start the negative urea cascade of poor animal health, depressed production, higher costs and lower profit.

Our pasture crude protein test actually cheaply measures elemental nitrogen. It’s expensive to measure amino acids or real protein content, so the test measures nitrogen and then multiples it by 6.25 to get an assumed level of ‘protein’.  It is indeed a crude measure since to actually get usable protein from nitrogen you need a range of other minerals and lots of energy to change nitrate into amino acids chains and then into real protein. To turn nitrate into usable protein, the cow’s rumen microbes need high levels of carbon/sugar/ energy and trace elements in their diet. The easiest way to get that is to grow grass that’s high in soluble solids/brix/ minerals/energy. This doesn’t happen with reliance on neat urea as the main fertiliser. Our standard Urea and Super-phosphate fertiliser program is not supplying an adequate balance of the dozens of minerals needed for complete proteins and high soluble solids in forage. One of the most visible effects is projectile cow poos.

The majority of the nitrogen in neat urea applied (56% according to Fonterra) either off-gases into the air or becomes nitrate leachate through the soil. The nitrate takes calcium, magnesium and other minerals with it when it heads into the water ways. It’s not possible to have high nitrate grass with high levels of soluble solids. It’s also difficult to get fully mineralised forage or crops from soils treated with glyphosate. Glyphosate does NOT decompose in the soil for decades and in the meantime it locks up soil minerals while promoting the fungi that create mycotoxins in preserved feed. Thus we put high nitrate, low energy and low mineral grass into our cows and the rumen microbes can’t cope with the excessive nitrogen. And this is where the urea ill-health cascade really kicks in:

Excessive nitrate in the forage promotes the growth of methanogen bacteria in the rumen. This class of bacteria can digest high N feed better than the ideal rumen microbes. Problem is they create methane and cows then belch it out and get tarred with the ‘nasty greenhouse gas producing’ shame label. Ruminants don’t inherently pollute, it really depends on what they eat.

Excess nitrate in the rumen becomes ammonia and seeps into the blood through the rumen wall. Ammonia is toxic to the animal. It reduces oxygen in the blood. The result is basically sick, under-performing cows that are overtaxing their livers and pulling lactose/ sugar out of their systems in an attempt to convert the excess nitrate/nitrite/ ammonia back to urea and get it the hell out of their bodies by every conceivable means.

We’re feeding our animals unnaturally high levels of nitrate. We observe their frantic efforts to get rid of the nitrogen and assume it’s normal. It’s NOT, it’s just average and a poor, expensive average at that. Cows can be a powerful positive source of soil regeneration but not with the way we’re fertilising. If we took the hundreds of millions we’re spending on Greenhouse Gas research and used it for lime and trace element applications we’d markedly reduce emissions, have healthier animals AND prompt humus formation, CO2 sequestration for better infiltration and water-holding in the soil.

Since we assume that high crude protein/ nitrate levels in pasture are good, we don’t generally take the timely measures to compensate: things like long stem hay for more carbohydrate/ DM and a good rumen mat; bentonite clay and humate powder for detox; and molasses for extra energy. Eventually the cow’s liver can’t cope with the demand to convert ammonia to pee-able urea and ammonia ends up circulating in the blood where it accumulates in the extremities contributing to lameness. Converting ammonia to less harmful urea in the liver requires lots of energy from the cow prompting the negative energy balance and rapid loss of body condition we see post-calving just when the demands of high milk production coincide with…you guessed it – high nitrate, lush, urea-fueled spring grass.

A cow losing condition in a negative energy balance is not going to figure it’s a good idea to ovulate and sustain a pregnancy as that could threaten her very existence. So we have non-cycling cows, use of CIDRs to force ovulation, increased phantom pregnancies and an embarrassingly low first mating conception rate of 48% with an overall fertilisation rate of 67%. And we congratulate ourselves on having stalled the decline when we are a long way from the 2016 goal of 78% fertilisation rate. Even if the cow conceives, the circulating ammonia is toxic to fetus which could help to explain our disappointing breed back rates. Remember that the number of lactations you get out of a cow is the most powerful factor in long term dairy profit. Cows don’t hit peak production until years 5 – 7 and they used to last until year 14 – 16. Now the majority are going to the works before 5 years old. I think we need to acknowledge that we’ve become accustomed to nutritionally crippled cows and take on board that we can do much better with the quality of the pasture we provide. Better for the animals, for production and for profit.

So now we have a pregnant cow producing, but losing condition, on a minerally deprived diet which leads to an impaired immune system. We purchase supplemental minerals to put in the water or in the ration to compensate for what is not coming through in the pasture. Where are these soil minerals that the cow’s system needs? Well, they weren’t there enough in the first place, or they’re locked up or made less available by the low soil pH created by urea and Super-phosphate applications. Or they’ve ended up in the rivers having been pulled out of the soil profile by the nitrate leaching from straight urea applications.

Antibiotics – the Dark Side

Any animal that is minerally impoverished will have a weak immune system. For dairy cows that means it’s hard for them to deactivate pathogens or mount a satisfactory defense against infections. So we get, according to Dairy NZ, half of the national herd under treatment for mastitis at some stage during the year. And then we rely on increasing levels of antibiotics and dry cow therapy to get us through to the next season. What we seem to be ignoring is that antibiotics negatively alter rumen microbes – the key workforce in milk production. And antibiotics impair immune function. A surprisingly large percentage of administered antibiotics spill, still active, from the faeces and urine into the soil and into the waterways. There they do the same thing they do in the gut, especially at continuous low levels. They rapidly create resistance to antibiotics in a wide range of microbes and often to additional classes of antibiotics. E.coli, for example, once a benign and useful microbe on ‘our’ side, has gone over to the enemy and uses ‘plug and play’ antibiotic resistance training modules called transposons to teach multiple resistances to completely unrelated microbe species.

In a surprising move in November, the US FDA asked pharmaceutical companies to voluntarily reduce use of antibiotics for growth promotion in animal feed, signalling that within 5 years it would be putting prohibitions in place. The Center for Disease Control is clear that use of antibiotics in animal production creates antibiotic resistance that limits human treatment options.we’re running out of antibiotics that work consistently for us and there are no further options in the antibiotic pipeline. And if you think we aren’t affected by this in NZ dairying, think again. Any monesin based coccidiostat / growth promoter in animal feed, bolus or water is an antibiotic and has potentially serious impacts on fatty acid creation, cell metabolism and insulin levels. We need holistic animal health advice that is truly for the benefit of the farmer’s bottom line. When was the last time your vet expressed concern over use of dry cow therapy or suggested that your animal health challenges might have something to do with nutrition and your fertiliser program?

So then we have all this withheld mastitis milk going to waste so we feed it to our replacement calves. Would you do that to your children? We feed our future herd a cocktail of antibiotics creating depressed immune systems and antibiotic resistance in them and then wonder why we have heifers calving with mastitis. So we give them dry cow therapy to ‘make sure for next time’ and we make the problem worse. It’s not working.deal to the basic issue which is that our animals are not only underfed but undernourished. Watery, high crude protein grass can’t provide the complex minerals and sugars needed for healthy animals. We’re just fighting expensive losing battles until we change the way we fertilise.

Massey researchers last year completed a study on Milk Urea (Most dairying countries use Milk Urea Nitrogen (MUN) but NZ standard is for Milk Urea (MU) expressed as mg/dl. The MUN figure is 47% smaller than the MU number). Get to know this MU acronym as I predict it will become the key indicator we use for quality dairying in the not too distant future. Open Country Dairy provided over a thousand milk component data points for a several year research project in the Waikato on how MU levels affect milk characteristics. They found MU levels that are rather higher than what is considered normal internationally. They also tested pasture crude protein and soluble solids levels on ten of these farms to link pasture characteristics with milk characteristics. Turns out high crude protein (high nitrate) / low soluble solids in forage creates high MU levels in milk which reduce ALL of the milk component indicators of protein, fat and lactose. Excessive urea makes poor quality milk. Since there is a direct numerical link between MUN and urea in the urine, we could be using the simple, daily MUN readings as an early warning system for nitrate leachate. It would be a darn sight easier than an Overseer program.

To put it crudely – we are pouring fertiliser nitrogen that could become usable protein for the cow, down a rat hole instead. We’re wasting protein components in the rumen because we’re growing minerally poor, low energy grass and the rumen microbes can’t utilize all the nitrogen we’re throwing at them. So the nitrogen goes into the cow’s blood where it creates a variety of havoc and then spills out into the environment where it damages water quality and the ecosystem in general. The cow also excretes excess nitrogen into the milk reducing milk quality, cheese quality and payout. We’re creating the problems and expenses associated with dairying by unscientific and minerally impoverished fertiliser programs. It doesn’t have to be this way!

A more balanced fertiliser blend, based on the calcium in lime and trace elements with foliar application of liquid nitrogen at much reduced rates actually yields more DM, more milk, less water use, more worms, higher soluble solids in the grass, less spent on animal health and higher profit. This practical approach reduces nitrate leachate and creates better quality milk. We can do…it is being done here right now.

The Future is Fat

We’re missing out on the real future of milk, which is not in its protein content but in its fat content and the allied fat soluble Vitamins A, D3 and K2. These vitamins can only be found, in their right form for us, in saturated animal fats. So I’m alienating the vegetarians and vegans here, too. Wake up, folks. Pretty much all our modern health problems can be traced back to poorly mineralised soils growing nutrient poor crops compounded by a serious deficiency of the fat soluble activators. They’re called activators because without vitamins A and D as catalysts the other minerals and vitamins in our diet can’t be properly utilized for protein creation. Proteins are the basis for hormones, enzymes and blood. They are involved in every body process. And here’s the kicker – Vitamin K2 has to be present for A and D to work properly and it’s only available in animal fat – particularly in butterfat. Vitamin D3 and A deficiency is now being implicated in every health problem we’ve got – heart disease, cancer, osteoporosis, diabetes, mental disorders. We’ve been chasing the wrong health train for 50 years. It’s not about avoiding natural animal fats, it’s about embracing them! Our appalling and deteriorating health stats should have made that clear to us decades ago…must have been the impaired mental capacity from lack of butter in our diets.

So how do we get high, fat-soluble vitamin butterfat? Here is where our not so secret but undervalued advantage comes in. Vitamin K2, that makes butter orange,is only created from cows grazing directly on rapidly growing green, well-mineralised, high calcium, low nitrate pastures. We have the nearly unique potential to create THE natural food components that are critically needed by all pre-conception parents, pregnant women, children, athletes, the aging…. well, everyone, really. These are the same natural, saturated fat vitamin components that give great flavour to the world’s great dishes and which solve the pressing problems of dental caries, orthodontia, dementia, atherosclerosis, kidney stones, birth defects and cancer, to name a few.

Instead we’re focusing on protein. We export dried, oxidized cholesterol milk powder around the globe, particularly to babies in China, setting them up for a life of immune and mental deficiencies through lack of the natural fats in mother’s milk. Surely you didn’t think I’d let milk companies get away scott free in this polemic? New Zealand milk companies have made butter oil for decades as a way of preserving cream components for reconstitution with dry milk powder in overseas factories. Butter oil is where the gold is, literally. We need to go back to marketing milk for its the real value – butterfat, and its high content of crucial Vitamins A, D3 and K2. Keep the milk solids at home and add value by giving them to grass-raised pigs which we then sell to China. Hint…pork lard has the highest Vitamin D3 content of any food except bear fat and we’re not about to start farming bears.

Let’s see, I’ve probably enraged everyone except the Jersey breeders and the pork producers…while I’m at it I may as well finish with a go at the banks. Where do you guys get off? You’re clearly not operating in the old mode of conservative adviser who has the farmer and the community’s best interest at heart. Get a life that actually improves the financial strength of farm families and the nation. You can still make a good living. There’s no need to be that bloody greedy.

We can easily produce the world’s best medicinal butterfat at an eye-watering premium while improving the quality of our soils, water and the health. There could be tremendous job satisfaction knowing that we’re creating food that truly nourishes and eventually heals both people and the environment at a great profit.

Our present high nitrate, low soluble solids (low mineral content) forage and the resulting water quality problems from leachate is NOT a good reason for sacrificing our low cost pasture-based advantage by moving into barns and total mixed ration for our cows. Fix the basic problem!! Use our cheap lime to drive quality grass growth that creates high vitamin A, D3 and K2 butter fat, healthy long-lived cows and a premium product that transforms human health.

I supply the references below that substantiate what I have said here.

Phyllis Tichinin

Hawkes Bay, New Zealand

 

Urea Cascade References – hundreds of other sources exist that corroborate the impacts of excessive applications of neat urea

Fert Applications & Soil Impacts

Urea amounts applied

Dexcel predictions for average all grass system applications for 2010 of 170 kg N/ha (or 370 kg urea/ ha)

Nitrogen loses

Numerous articles on nitrogen in pasture settings and greenhouse gas considerations http://www.greenhouse.unimelb.edu.au/Online_Articles.htm and http://www.greenhouse.unimelb.edu.au/publicls.htm#Peer_Reviewed_Reports,_Refereed_Conference_Papers

Summit Quinphos “on average 50% of the nitrogen from the ordinary urea you apply is lost after application.” Dairy Exporter Sept 2009 p 28

Only 30 -40% N applied to soil (fert +dung & urine) gets used to grow more plants. 300% increase in Australian dairy farm use of N early 1990’s to early 2000’s with only 65% increase productionWeak correlation N applied & farm profit in Ireland, Australia and NZ Nitrogen – Growth Promotant for Pastures Richard Eckard Univ. Melbourne 2006

N2O, nitrate and soil carbon losses increased, with N fert application Visual Soils Assessment Vol 1. G. Shepherd 2009

Milk Urea N an excellent predictor of urinary N excretion. Using Milk Urea Nitrogen to Predict Nitrogen Excretion and Utilisation Efficiency in Lactating Dairy Cows. J.S. Jonkers et all 1998 J Dairy Sci 81:2681-2692

Reduced N usage Possible

NZ dairy farms can use 1/3rd the solid urea and produce 21t DM while leaching less than 18 kg N/ ha.Using Humic Compounds to Improve Efficiency of Fertiliser Nitrogen. P. Schofield et al. Fertiliser and Lime Institute 2012

Multiple abstracts on biological fertiliser/management effectiveness. Comparisons between ‘conventional’ and low-input ‘biological’ http://www.biologicalfarmers.co.nz

Plant Uptake Issues and Results

Nitrate Content Impacts Pasture Quality

Higher Nitrate levels Assoc with weight loss, milk reduction, abortions. Most NZ dairy forages are Nitrate accumulators: rye, wheat, maize. Mineral deficiencies in cows reduce ability to convert NO3 to protein. Ammonium uptake by roots preferable to nitrate uptake. A Review of factors affecting and prevention of pasture-induced nitrate toxicity in grazing animals. Bolan and Kemp NZ Grasslands Assoc 2003

Nitrate content in pasture increases with N fertilisation Massey No 4 Dairy unit experiment 2002 cited in Bolan and Kemp 2003above

Prolonged use (16 yr) of N fertiliser caused massive declines in blood copper levels in cows resulting in reduced milk yields, increased anaemia, depressed immune response, more virulent viruses Copper necessary for catalase formation. Bacteria become pathengenic because blood and tissues are catalase deficient. Soil, Grass and Cancer. Andre Voisin 1959. Acres USA 1999

Highly fertilised pasture, esp clover, result in high N being released in rumen without adequate energy for microbes= health problems with ammonia toxicity.   Nitrogen – Growth Promotant for Pastures Richard Eckard Univ. Melbourne 2006

Excess nitrate in pasture is a health issue for ruminants. The breakdown of these harmful nitrates happens faster on a diet rich in readily available carbohydrates – high brix grass – because the anaerobic rumen microbes use the fermentation products of carbohydrates to speed up the nitrate reduction reaction. Takahashi, et al. Effects of dietary protein and energy levels on the reduction of nitrate and nitrite in the rumen and methemoglobin formation in sheep. Jpn. J. Zootech. Sci., 1980, 51, 626–631

Acidosis

Lush, high CP, nitrogenous pasture reduces rumen pH. Nutrition and Lameness in Pasture-Fed Dairy Cattle C.T. Westwood & I.J. Lean Proceed.NZ Soc.Ani.Product. Vol 61 Jan2001 p 128-134

Need for Calcium and Traces

Soil calcium percentages determine availability of trace elements and microbe health. The Albrecht Papers Vol 1. William A Albrecht. Univ Missouri AcresUSA 1999

Science in Agriculture A A Andersen 2002 AcresUSA

Many NZ cows suffering from potassium excess and Ca/Mg and traces deficiencies – link with N fert use. Balancing minerals shown to increase milk productionDr Gavin Wilson March 1998 www.royalsociety.org.nz/1998/03/03/balancing-minerals-shown-to-increase-milk-production/

Higher Calcium levels promote efficient plant uptake of N. Use of foliar N with humic acid more efficient. Visual Soils Assessment Vol 1 p 116 – 117 Graeme Shepherd 2009

Mycotoxins and Endotoxins

Penicillin moulds in Silage. How they affect Rumen Health 2010 Dr. Anna Catharina Bergehttp://en.engormix.com/MA-dairy-cattle/dairy-industry/articles/mycotoxins-in-silage-t1662/472-p0.htm

Higher N fertilisation raises mycotoxin levels. Breaking the Mold. State of Science Review. Charles M. Benbrook http://organic-center.org/reportfiles/MycotoxinReport.pdf

Fewer infections with less or no N fertilisation B. Birzele, A. Meier, H. Hindorf, J. Krämer and H.-W. Dehne (2002)Epidemiology of Fusarium infection and deoxynivalenol content in winter wheat in the Rhineland, Germany European Journal of Plant Pathology 108 (7), 667-673

Species composition

N fertilisers reduce clover %. The Effects of Urea and ASN on Product. Qual. Irrigated Dairy Pastures In Canterbury NZ. Moir et al 2003 Fert. & Lime Institute

Antibiotics

FDA   Phasing Out Certain Antibiotic Use in Farm Animals Dec 11 2013http://www.fda.gov/ForConsumers/ConsumerUpdates/ucm378100.htm

NZ Antibiotic use

Ionophores (monensin) is 34% (17.82T active ingredient) of ABs used on animals and 20% of all antibiotics used in NZ. NZ Expert Panel Review 1999 p 14-15

Dietary monensin increases survival of deadly EcO157 pathogen.Communities and Survival of Escherichia coli O157:H7 in Monensin-Treated Wastewater from a Dairy Lagoon.Ravva et al. Published online 2013 January 22. 10.1371/journal.pone.0054782

Only 3% difference in cure rate between untreated and antibiotic treated mastitis quarters. There are numerous types of Strep uberis pathogens even on a single farm. These organisms adapt to varying conditions and need to be dealt to with changes to environmental conditions on farm. Mastitis in the NZ L.V. Douglass PhD thesis Massey Univ 1999

58% of sampled calves showed bacterial resistance to commonly used antibiotics MAF Technical Paper 2011/5.3 http://www.mpi.govt.nz/Default.aspx?TabId=126&id=1038

BUN & MU

NZ levels 19 to 65 mg/dl milk urea. Peter Thomson, MAF O!A 11-243 17 Jan 2012

NZ Crude Protein in pasture about 20% Jane Kay, DNZ Dairy Exporter Nov 2013 p 40. Also indicated, ”Research suggests these high MU values are not detrimental to the cow,” but no research cited. Also “Lowering MU values will not necessarily reduce environmental N loading as there are numerous other factors….supplements, stocking rate, pasture utilisation.”

Metabolic connections

BUN, MUN, urea excretion all proportionally related. Using MUN to Predict Nitrogen Excretion and Utilisation Efficiency in Lactating Dairy Cows. Jonker et al 198 JDairy Sci 81:2681-2692

Excellent layman’s overview on cow health implications excess nitrate in feed. True Protein vs. ‘Funny Protein’ Dr Jerry Brunetti ACRES USA Feb- April 2004 Vol 34

Ammonia impacts

Lameness

Increased CP in pastures & high BUN increases histamine and compromises hoof germinal cells. Low effective fiber & high degradable protein increase risk of laminitis. High CP in pasture and high BUN associated with lameness. Low pH maize silage and lactic acid in fermented feeds prompt rumen acidosis. Nutrition and Lameness in Pasture-Fed Dairy Cattle C.T. Westwood & I.J. Lean Proceed.NZ Soc. Ani. Product. Vol 61 Jan2001 p 128-134

The Link Between Nutrition, Acidosis, Laminitis and the Environment J. Noceck http://www.wcds.afns.ualberta.ca/Proceedings/1996/wcd96049.htm

Infertility

DNZ: we’ve arrested the decline in fertility but in calf rate at 6 week is 67% with 48% first service conception rate vs 2003 program performance target of 78% by 2016. Dairy Exporter June 2012 p 139

A significant negative association was found between MU level and pregnancy rates in 36,000 cow sample. Relationships Between Milk Urea and Production, Nutrition, and Fertility Traits in Israeli Dairy Herds Hojman et al J Dairy Sci Volume 87, Issue 4, April 2004, Pages 1001–1011

Excess urea impairs reproduction. Using Milk Urea Nitrogen to Predict Nitrogen Excretion and Utilisation Efficiency in Lactating Dairy Cows. J.S. Jonkers et all 1998 J Dairy Sci 81:2681-2692

Lower MU levels less likely to reduce fertility than MU levels above 38 mg/dl in first parity. MU of approx. 26 mg/dl was ideal. Milk Urea Nitrogen and Fertility in Dairy Farms J Anim.Vet. Advances 2010 Vol 9 Issue 10 P 1519-1525.

Milk Urea Nitrogen and Fertility in Dairy Farms J Anim.Vet. Advances 2010 Vol 9 Issue 10 P 1519-1525.

Negative Energy Balance and BSC

Low fat%, high CP diet, high MUN associated with low fertility, esp. first parity cows. MUN and Fertility in Diary Farms Nourizi et al J Animal & Vet Adv. 2010. Vol 9 Issue 10 www.medwelljournals.com/fulltext/?doi=javaa.2010.1519.1525

73% heifers below target weight at calving LIC data 2013 as cited Bas Schouten Rural Weekly 23 April 2014

25% of heifers left in herd at end of third lactation Bas Schouten, NZ Grazing vet. Rural News 23 April 2014 p 45

Mastitis

A healthy udder has <25,0000 somatic cells/ml. For every clinical mastitis case likely to be 15 to 40 cases of subclinical responsible for up to 70% of the production loses associated with mastitis. $1 spent on mastitis control returns $15 – 20 in production, premiums, and reduced death and culling. Linda Tikosfsky extension vet Cornell Uni March 2008 NODPA News p 34

Dairy NZ’s mastitis specialist, Jane Lacy Hulbert, creator of the DNZ SAMM mastits program, confirmed by phone message that, consistent with the figures on their website ( under Farmer / Industry information), average mastitis rate is 50% of the NZ dairy herd. Phone9 March 2013

Risk of coliform mastitis increases in housed cows. Who Controls Mastitis? You or the Bugs? Lacy-Hulber & Woolford Dairy NZ

SCC

High SCC prompts high plasmin content negatively affecting milk qualities. Evaluation of the biological activation of plasmin plasminogen system. Rebucci et al. Ital.J. Anim.Sci.Vol 4 (Suppl.2) 330-332, 2005

Milk Component issues

Spatial-time correlation between milk urea with milk components and somatic cell scores of bulk milk samples from farms supplying milk for cheese and milk powder manufacturing. Garcia-Muniz, Lopez-Villalobos, Burke, Sandbrook, Vazquez-Pelaez. NZ Soc. Animal Production Annual Meeting July 2013, Hamilton, NZ Vol 73

Milk Urea Project with Open Country Dairy Ltd. Final Report. Lopez-Villalobos, Burke, Garcia Muniz June 2013

Mastitis SCC MU impacts milk manufacturingMastitis impact on technological properties of milk and quality of milk products—a review LeMarchel et al Dairy Science & Technology May 2011, Volume 91, Issue 3, pp 247-282 279 references http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s13594-011-0009-6 Accessed 18 March 2014

Clover forage and protein & fat supplements significantly decreased total milk protein and increased non-protein N, so that casein N was reduced and renneting became poorer. Effects of the levels of N fertiliser, grass and supplementary feeds on nitrogen composition and renetting properties of milk from cows at pasture. J.E. Hermansen et al. J Dairy Research Vol 61 no. 2 1994

Plasmin increases in milk with elevated SCC and mastitis. Evaluation of the biological activation of plasmin plasminogen system in sheep and goat milk. Rebucci et al. Ital.K.Anim.Sci. Vo. 4 ( suppl.2), 330-332 2005

Oxidized Cholesterol

The role of dietary oxidized cholesterol and oxidized fatty acids in the development of atherosclerosis http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed?linkname=pubmed_pubmed_reviews&from_uid=16270280Staprans I1, Pan XM, Rapp JH, Feingold KR.accessed March 2014

Cholesterol oxidation: . oxysterol content milk powder 1.0 – 2.5 ug/g. Eggs 0.05 – 1.50 ug/ g. dependent on process temp and length of storage. Health Hazard and the Role of Antioxidants Valenzuela et al. Biol Res 36: 291-302, 2003 291. Laboratory of Lipids and Antioxidants, INTA, University of Chile, Santiago, Chile.

 

Interactions between sphinomyelin and Oxysterols contributes to Atherosclerosis and sudden death. Fred A Kummerow Univ. Illinois. Am J Cardiovasc Dis 2013:3(1): 17-26   How delivery mode and feeding can shape the bacterial community in the infant gut. Song et al . CMAJ, March 19, 2013, 185(5)

 

C. dificile pathogens associated with enteric and atopic disease more commonly detected in formula fed infants. Gut microbiota of healthy Canadian infants: profiles by mode of delivery and infant diet at 4 months. Asad et al http://www.academia.edu/2592965/Gut_microbiota_of_healthy_Canadian_infants_profiles_by_mode_of_delivery_and_infant_diet_at_4_months

Future is Fat Soluble Activators

Vitamins A, D,K2 crucial to utilisation of all other minerals and vitamins. Nutrition and Physical Degeneration Weston A Price 1945 Chpt 22

On the Trail of the Elusive X-Factor: A Sixty Year Mystery Solved Dr Chris Masterjohn Wise Traditions Journal Vol 9 No. 3

Cut/transported Grass reduces CLA 50%, Omega 3 30%  Organic grass-based milk highest in fat soluble quality. Effect of production system and geographic location on milk quality parameters. Butler et al. Newcastle Uni. UK 2012Gillian.butler@ncl.co.uk

The Pursuit of Happiness: How Nutrient-dense Animal Fats Promote Mental and Emotional Health Dr Chris Masterjohn Wise Traditions Journal Volume 9 No. 4

5 Times more CLA from cows feed on pasture with no supplements Conjugated Linoleic Acid Content of Milk from Cows Fed Different Diets Dihman et al Journal of Dairy ScienceJournal of Dairy ScienceVolume 82, Issue 10, October 1999, Pages 2146–215 sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0022030299754585

Herbage based milk higher in CLA Characterization of milk from feeding systems based on herbage or corn silage…..Hurtaud et al Dairy Science & Technology March 2014, Volume 94, Issue 2, pp 103-123http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007%2Fs13594-013-0147-0

Grazing cows are more efficient than zero-grazed and grass silage-fed cows in milk rumenic acid production. Mohammed et al Journal of Dairy ScienceVolume 92, Issue 8, August 2009, Pages 3874–3893 www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0022030209707118

Financial impacts intensification and urea fertilisation

Effects on farm profit

Weak correlation N applied & farm profit in Ireland, Australia and NZ Nitrogen – Growth Promotant for Pastures Richard Eckard Univ. Melbourne 2006

Brian Hockings Stratford Project – low input dairies can be as or more profitable than high input dairies Dairy Exporter Dec 2013

Profitable milk production possible without N fertiliser. Profit/ ha increased in only 3 out 10 years with N. Use Fertiliser wisely and well. Chris Glassey DNZ Dairy Exporter Feb 2014

 

 

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One thought on “The Urea Cascade in Dairying

  1. Fantastic article, couldn’t agree more with everything you have written. Sheep and Beef Farmer well down biological farm track

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