Effect of Applying Molasses and Propionic Acid on Fermentation Quality and Aerobic Stability of Total Mixed Ration Silage Prepared with Whole-plant Corn in Tibet

  • Chen, Lei (Institute of Ensiling and Processing of Grass, College of Animal Science and Technology, Nanjing Agricultural University) ;
  • Guo, Gang (Institute of Ensiling and Processing of Grass, College of Animal Science and Technology, Nanjing Agricultural University) ;
  • Yuan, Xianjun (Institute of Ensiling and Processing of Grass, College of Animal Science and Technology, Nanjing Agricultural University) ;
  • Shimojo, Masataka (Laboratory of Animal Feed Science, Division of Animal Science, Department of Animal and Marine Bioresource Sciences, Faculty of Agriculture, Kyushu University) ;
  • Yu, Chengqun (Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, Chinese Academy of Sciences) ;
  • Shao, Tao (Institute of Ensiling and Processing of Grass, College of Animal Science and Technology, Nanjing Agricultural University)
  • Received : 2013.07.02
  • Accepted : 2013.09.14
  • Published : 2014.03.01


The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of molasses and propionic acid on the fermentation quality and aerobic stability of total mixed ration (TMR) silages prepared with whole-plant corn in Tibet. TMR (354 g/kg DM) was ensiled with four different treatments: no additive (control), molasses (M), propionic acid (P), and molasses+propionic acid (PM), in laboratory silos (250 mL) and fermented for 45 d. Silos were opened and silages were subjected to an aerobic stability test for 12 days, in which chemical and microbiological parameters of TMR silages were measured to determined the aerobic deterioration. After 45 d of ensiling, the four TMR silages were of good quality with low pH value and ammonia/total N (AN), and high lactic acid (LA) content and V-scores. M silage showed the highest (p<0.05) LA content and higher dry matter (DM) recovery than the control and P silages. P silage had lower (p<0.05) LA content than the control silage. During aerobic exposure, lactic acid contents decreased gradually in the control and M silages, while that of P and PM silages increased, and the peak values were observed after 9 d. M silage had similar yeast counts with the control silage (> $10^5$ cfu/g FM), however, it appeared to be more stable as indicated by a delayed pH value increase. P and PM silages showed fewer yeasts (< $10^5$ cfu/g FM) (p<0.05) and were more stable than the control and M silages during aerobic exposure. It was concluded that M application increased LA content and improved aerobic stability of TMR silage prepared with whole-plant corn in Tibet. P application inhibited lactic acid production during ensiling, and apparently preserved available sugars which stimulated large increases in lactic acid during aerobic exposure stage, which resulted in greater aerobic stability of TMR silage.


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