Effect of Supplementation of Fish and Canola Oil in the Diet on Milk Fatty Acid Composition in Early Lactating Holstein Cows

  • Vafa, Toktam S. (Payame Noor University) ;
  • Naserian, Abbas A. (Excellence Center for Animal Science, Faculty of Agriculture, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad) ;
  • Moussavi, Ali R. Heravi (Excellence Center for Animal Science, Faculty of Agriculture, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad) ;
  • Valizadeh, Reza (Excellence Center for Animal Science, Faculty of Agriculture, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad) ;
  • Mesgaran, Mohsen Danesh (Excellence Center for Animal Science, Faculty of Agriculture, Ferdowsi University of Mashhad)
  • Received : 2010.01.09
  • Accepted : 2010.05.17
  • Published : 2012.03.01


This study examined the effects of supplementation of fish oil and canola oil in the diet on milk yield, milk components and fatty acid composition of Holstein dairy cows in early lactation. Eight multiparous early lactation Holstein cows ($42{\pm}12$ DIM, $40{\pm}6kg$ daily milk yield) were fed a total mixed ration supplemented with either 0% oil (Control), 2% fish oil (FO), 1% canola oil +1% fish oil (FOCO), or 2% canola oil (CO) according to a double $4{\times}4$ Latin square design. Each period lasted 3 wk; experimental analyses were restricted to the last week of each period. Supplemental oils were added to a basal diet which was formulated according to NRC (2001) and consisted of 20% alfalfa, 20% corn silage and 60% concentrate. Milk yield was similar between diets (p>0.05), but dry matter intake (DMI) was lower (p<0.05) in cows fed FO diet compared to other diets. Milk fat percentage and daily yield decreased (p<0.01) with the supplementation of fish and canola oil. The daily yield and percentage of milk protein, lactose and solids-not-fat (SNF) were not affected by diets (p>0.05). The proportion (g/100 g fatty acids) of short chain fatty acids (SCFA) decreased and polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) increased (p<0.05) in milk of all cows fed diets supplemented with oil. The proportions of 6:0, 8:0, 10:0 12:0 and 14:0 fatty acids in milk fat decreased (p<0.01) for all diets supplemented with oil, but the proportions of 14:1, 16:0 and 16:1 fatty acids were not affected by diets (p>0.05). The proportion of trans(t)-18:1 increased (p<0.01) in milk fat of cows fed FO and FOCO diets, but CO diet had the highest proportion of cis(c)-11 18:1 (p<0.01). The concentration of t-10, c-12 18:2, c-9 t-11 18:2, 18:3, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA, 20:5) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA, 22:6) increased (p<0.05) in FO and FOCO diets in comparison with the other two diets. These data indicate that including fish oil in combination with canola oil significantly modifies the fatty acid composition of milk.


  1. AbuGhazaleh, A. A., D. J. Schingoethe, A. R. Hippen and K. F. Kalscheur. 2004. Conjugated linoleic acid increases in milk when cows fed fish meal and extruded soybeans for an extended period of time. J. Dairy Sci. 87:1758-1766.
  2. AbuGhazaleh, A. A., D. J. Schingoethe, A. R. Hippen and K. F. Kalscheur. 2003. Conjugated linoleic acid and vaccenic acid in rumen, plasma, and milk of cows fed fish oil and fats differing in saturation of 18 carbon fatty acids. J. Dairy Sci. 86:3648-3660.
  3. AbuGhazaleh, A. A., D. J. Schingoethe, A. R. Hippen and K. F. Kalscheur. 2003. Milk conjugated linoleic acid response to fish oil supplementation of diets differing in fatty acid profiles. J. Dairy Sci. 86:944-953.
  4. AbuGhazaleh, A. A., D. J. Schingoethe, A. R. Hippen and L. A. Whitlock. 2002. Feeding fish meal and extruded soybeans enhances the conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) content of milk. J. Dairy Sci. 85:624-631.
  5. AbuGhazaleh, A. A., D. J. Schingoethe, A. R. Hippen, K. F. Kalscheur and L. A. Whitlock. 2002. Fatty acid profiles of milk and rumen digesta from cows fed fish oil, extruded soybeans or their blend. J. Dairy Sci. 85:2266-2276.
  6. Ashes, J. R., B. D. Siebert, S. K. Gulati, A. Z. Cuthbertson and T. W. Scott. 1992. Incorporation of n-3 fatty acids of fish oil into tissue and serum lipids of ruminants. Lipids 27:629-631.
  7. Bayourthe, C., F. Enjalbert and R. Moncoulon. 2000. Effects of different forms of canola oil fatty acids plus canola meal on milk composition and physical properties of butter. J. Dairy Sci. 83:690-696.
  8. Benson, J. A. and C. K. Reynolds. 2001. Effects of abomasal infusion of long-chain fatty acids on splanchnic metabolism of pancreatic and gut hormones in lactating dairy cows. J. Dairy Sci. 84:1488-1500.
  9. Bauman, D. E. and J. M. Griinari. 2003. Nutritional regulation of milk fat synthesis. Annu. Rev. Nutr. 23:203-227.
  10. Baumgard, L. H., J. K. Sangster and D. E. Bauman. 2001. Milk fat synthesis in dairy cows is progressively reduced by increasing supplemental amounts of trans-10, cis-12 conjugated linoleic acid (CLA). J. Nutr. 131:1764-1769.
  11. Baumgard, L. H., B. A. Corl, D. A. Dwyer, A. Sæbø and D. E. Bauman. 2000. Identification of the conjugated linoleic acid isomer that inhibits milk fat synthesis. Anim. J. Physiol. 278:179-184.
  12. Chang, J. H. P., D. K. Lunt and S. B. Smith. 1992. Fatty acid composition and fatty acid elongase and stearoyl-CoA desaturase activities in tissues of steers fed high oleate sunflower seed. J. Nutr. 122:2074-2080.
  13. Chichlowski, M. W., J. W. Schroeder, C. S. Park, W. L. Keller and D. E. Schimek. 2005. Altering the fatty acids in milk fat by including canola seed in dairy cattle diets. J. Dairy Sci. 88:3084-3094.
  14. Chilliard, Y. and A. Ferlay. 2004. Dietary lipids and forages interactions on cow and goat milk fatty acid composition and sensory properties. Reprod. Nutr. Dev. 44:467-492.
  15. Chilliard, Y., A. Ferlay and M. Doreau. 2001. Effect of different types of forages, animal fat or marine oils in cow's diet on milk fat secretion and composition, especially conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) and polyunsaturated fatty acids. Livest. Prod. Sci. 70:31-48.
  16. Corl, B. A., L. H. Baumgard, D. A. Dwyer, J. M. Griinari, B. S. Phillips and D. E. Bauman. 2001. The role of (9-desaturase in the yield of cis-9, trans-11 CLA. J. Nutr. Biochem. 12:622-630.
  17. Cruz-Hernandez, C., J. K. G. Kramer, J. J. Kennelly, D. R. Glimm, B. M. Sorensen, E. K. Okine, L. A. Goonewardene and R. J. Weselake. 2007. Evaluating the conjugated linoleic acid and trans 18:1 isomers in milk fat of dairy cows fed increasing amounts of sunflower oil and a constant level of fish oil. J. Dairy Sci. 90:3786-380.
  18. DePeters, E. J., J. B. German, S. J. Taylor, S. T. Essex and H. Perez-Monti. 2001. Fatty acid and triglyceride composition of milk fat from lactating Holstein cows in response to supplemental canola oil. J. Dairy Sci. 84:929-936.
  19. Donovan, D. C., D. J. Schingoethe, R. J. Baer, J. Ryali, A. R. Hippen and S. T. Franklin. 2000. Influence of dietary fish oil on conjugated linoleic acid and other fatty acids in milk fat from lactating dairy cows. J. Dairy Sci. 83:2620-2628.
  20. Griinari, J. M., B. A. Corl, S. H. Lacy, P. Y. Chouinard, K. V. Nurmela and D. E. Bauman. 2000. Conjugated linoleic acid is synthesized endogenously in lactating dairy cows by ${\delta}^9$-desaturase. J. Nutr. 130:2285-2291.
  21. Grummer, R. R. 1991. Effect of feed on the composition of milk fat. J. Dairy Sci. 74:3244-3257.
  22. Harvatine, K. J., Y. R. Boisclair and D. E. Bauman. 2009. Recent advances in the regulation of milk fat synthesis. Animal 3:40-54.
  23. Harvatine, K. J. and M. S. Allen. 2006. Effects of fatty acid supplements on feed intake, and feeding and chewing behavior of lactating dairy cows. J. Dairy Sci. 89:1104-1112.
  24. Ip, C., S. Banni, E. Angioni, G. Carta, J. McGruley, H. J. Thompson, D. Barbano and D. E. Bauman. 1999. Conjugated linoleic acid enriched butter fat alters morphogenesis and reduces cancer risk in rats. J. Nutr. 129:2135-2142.
  25. Jenkins, T. C. 1998. Fatty acid composition of milk from Holstein cows fed oleamide or canola oil. J. Dairy Sci. 81:794-800.
  26. Juchem, S. O., J. E. P. Santos, R. L. A. Cerri, R. C. Chebel, K. N. Galvao, R. Bruno, E. J. DePeters, T. Scott, W. W. Thatcher and D. Luchini. 2008. Effect of calcium salts of fish and palm oils on lactational performance of Holstein cows. Anim. Feed Sci. Technol. 140:18-38.
  27. Keady, T. W. J. and C. S. Mayne. 1999. The effects of level of fish oil inclusion in the diet on rumen digestion and fermentation parameters in cattle offered grass silage based diets. Anim. Feed Sci. Technol. 81:57-68.
  28. Kelly, M. L., J. R. Berry, D. A. Dwyer, J. M. Griinari, P. Y. Chouinard, M. E. Van Amburgh and D. E. Bauman. 1998. Dietary fatty acid sources effect conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) concentrations in milk from lactating dairy cows. J. Nutr. 128:881-885.
  29. Kepler, C. R., W. P. Tucker and S. B. Tove. Biohydrogenation of unsaturated fatty acids. IV. Substrate specificity and inhibition of linoleate -12-cis, -11-trans-isomerase from Butyrivibrio fibrisolvens. J. Biol. Chem. 245:3612-3620.
  30. Lee, M. R. F., J. K. S. Tweed, A. P. Moloney and N. D. Scollan. 2005. The effects of fish oil supplementation on rumen metabolismand the biohydrogenation of unsaturated fatty acids in beef steers given diets containing sunflower oil. Anim. Sci. 80:361-367.
  31. Lock, A. L. and K. J. Shingfield. 2004. Optimising milk composition. Dairying-Using Scince to Meet Consumers' Needs (Ed. E. Kebreab, J. Mills and D. E. Beever). Br. Soc. Anim. Sci. Nottingham University Press, Loughborough, United Kingdom. 29:107-188.
  32. Mansbridge, R. J. and J. S. Blake. 1997. Nutritional factors affecting the fatty acids composition of bovine milk. Br. J. Nutr. 78(Suppl. 1):S37-S47.
  33. Mosley, E. E., G. L. Powell, M. B. Riley and T. C. Jenkins. 2002. Microbial biohydrogenation of oleic acid to trans isomers in vitro. J. Lipid Res. 43:290-296.
  34. Parodi, P. W. 1997. Cow's milk fat components as potential anticarcinogenic agents. J. Nutr. 127:1055-1060.
  35. Palmquist, D. L. and J. M. Griinari. 2006. Milk fatty acid composition in response to reciprocal combinations of sunflower and fish oil in the diet. Anim. Feed Sci. Technol. 131:358-369.
  36. Peterson, D. G., L. H. Baumgard and D. E. Bauman. 2002. Dosedependent reduction in milk fat secretion with abomasal infusion of trans-10, cis-12 conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) and comparison to diet-induced milk fat depression. J. Dairy Sci. 85(Suppl. 1):703.
  37. Piperova, L. S., B. B. Teter, I. Bruckental, J. Sampugna, S. E. Mills, M. P. Yurawecz, J. Fritsche, K. Ku and R. A. Erdman. 2002. Mammary lipogenic enzyme activity, trans fatty acids and conjugated linoleic acids are altered in lactating dairy cows fed a milk fat-depressing diet. J. Nutr. 130:2568-2574.
  38. Ramaswamy, N., R. J. Baer, D. J. Schingoethe, A. R. Hippen, K. M. Kasperson and A. Whitlock. 2001. Composition and flavor of milk and butter from cows fed fish oil, extruded soybeans, or their combination. J. Dairy Sci. 84:2144-2151.
  39. SAS Institute. 1996. SAS/STAT: Changes and enhancements through release 6.11. SAS Inst. Inc., Cary, NC.
  40. Shingfield, K. J. and J. M. Griinari. 2007. Role of biohydrogenation intermediates in milk fat depression. Eur. J. Lipid Sci. Technol. 109:799-816.
  41. Shingfield, K. J., C. K. Reynolds, B. Lupoli, V. Toivonen, M. P. Yurawecz, P. Delmonte, J. M. Griinari, A. S. Grandison and D. E. Beever. 2005. Effect of forage type and proportion of concentrate in the diet on milk fatty acid composition in cows fed sunflower oil and fish oil. J. Anim. Sci. 80:225-238.
  42. Shingfield, K. J., S. Ahvenjsrvi, V. Toivonen, A. Arola, K. V. V. Nurmela, P. Huhtanen and J. M. Griinari. 2003. Effect of fish oil on biohydrogenation of fatty acids and milk fatty acid content in cows. J. Anim. Sci. 77:165-179.
  43. Ward, A. T., K. M. Wittenberg and R. Przybylski. 2002. Bovine milk fatty acid profiles produced by feeding diets containing solin, flax and canola. J. Dairy Sci. 85:1191-1196.
  44. Whitlock, L., D. J. Schingoethe, A. R. Hippen, K. F. Kalscheur, R. J. Baer, N. Ramaswamy and K. M. Kasperson. 2002. Fish oil and extruded soybeans fed in combination increase CLA in milk of dairy cows more than when fed separately. J. Dairy Sci. 85:234-243.
  45. Zheng, H. C., J. X. Liu, J. H. Yao, Q. Yuan, H. W. Ye, J. A. Ye and W. M. Wu. 2005. Effects of dietary sources of vegetable oils on performance of high-yielding lactating cows and conjugated linoleic acids in milk. J. Dairy Sci. 88:2037-2042.

Cited by

  1. Milk Yield, Composition, and Fatty Acid Profile in Dairy Cows Fed a High-concentrate Diet Blended with Oil Mixtures Rich in Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids vol.28, pp.6, 2015,
  2. Effects of common dietary fatty acids on milk yield and concentrations of fat and fatty acids in dairy cattle vol.57, pp.11, 2017,
  3. Conditions Associated with Marine Lipid-Induced Milk Fat Depression in Sheep Cause Shifts in the In Vitro Ruminal Metabolism of 1-13C Oleic Acid vol.8, pp.11, 2018,
  4. Co-Expression Network Analysis Identifies miRNA–mRNA Networks Potentially Regulating Milk Traits and Blood Metabolites vol.19, pp.9, 2018,