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Managing diet quality for cheddar cheese manufacturing milk. 2. Pasture v. grain supplements.

  • Christian, M P
  • Grainger, C
  • Sutherland, B J
  • Mayes, J J
  • Hannah, M C
  • Kefford, B
Published Article
The Journal of dairy research
Publication Date
Aug 01, 1999
PMID: 10480075


The effects of supplementing a basal diet of silage and hay with increasing amounts of harvested spring pasture, or with lupin and wheat, on the composition of milk and the consequent effects on cheese composition and yield were investigated in an indoor feeding study. Milk was collected from five groups of eight cows in mid lactation offered different diets and manufactured into Cheddar cheese on a pilot scale. Milk from cows given the lupin-wheat (LW) and the high pasture level (HP) diets produced low moisture cheese. Cheese produced with milk from cows given the control diet was high in moisture content compared with that made with milk from cows offered the LW diet. Cheese yields from the milk of cows offered the HP and LW diets were greater than from the milk of cows on the control diet, and were associated with the higher casein concentrations of these milks. Casein number was higher in milk from diets supplemented with pasture but was not an indicator of the functional properties of milk that affected cheese moisture. The proportion of beta-casein in milk from cows offered the HP diet was higher and that of gamma-casein lower than in milk from cows given the LW supplement, although cheese moisture content was similar with both diets. Milk from cows offered the HP diet had a greater inorganic P concentration than that from cows given the LW diet, although the dietary intake of P was higher for the LW diet. The significance of the effect of dietary P intake on the concentration of inorganic P in milk and hence its suitability for cheesemaking was apparent when dietary P intake was low, as shown in milk produced by cows offered the control diet.

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