Posted: October 19, 2020

Dairy farmers should use roasted high-oleic-acid soybean in their cows' feed rations, according to Kevin Harvatine, associate professor of nutritional physiology

Soybeans contain about 20 percent fat, he explained, and normal soybean fat is high in polyunsaturated fatty acids. High-oleic varieties contain about 75 percent oleic acid and less than 10 percent polyunsaturated fat.

Polyunsaturated fatty acids are toxic to rumen microbes and disrupt normal rumen function, leading to the production of bioactive fatty acids, which cause milk fat depression. "A recent study at Penn State," he said, "demonstrated that high-oleic-acid soybeans were lower risk for causing diet-induced milk fat depression."

--Jeff Mulhollem