There are alternatives to palm oil | UFAC UK

There are alternatives to palm oil

Published 6 April 2020 Back to News
As more and more industries move away from palm oil, we explore alternatives that can keep dairy cows functioning at peak levels.

There are alternatives to palm oil

Dynalac is the UK’s leading palmfree fat supplement.

The environmental spotlight is firmly focussed on palm oil production, so do you need to feed it? Not necessarily, according to Nigel Bateson from UFAC-UK.

The impact of palm oil production on tropical rainforests is high on the agenda of retailers and consumers, making it one of the major environmental concerns facing UK feed manufacture. Quite simply, most palm oil production is not sustainable and the feed industry must be seen to be reacting to this.

Why do some diets include palm oil?

Calcium soaps are made from palm fatty acid distillate (PFAD) which is a by-product of the palm oil industry. They are principally fed as an energy source to increase the energy density of the diet. It is primarily made up of C16:0 fatty acid which can support butterfat production although there is a limit to how much of an increase can be achieved and this only really happens in mid to late lactation cows. They also contain C18:1 fatty acid which can support body condition, therefore reducing body condition loss in early lactation.

The question is ‘can you achieve these benefits without feeding palm oil?’ Actually yes, and by using a more balanced fatty acid supplement you can achieve additional benefits too.

Look after the rumen

Firstly, the truth is that if you want to increase butterfat, you can achieve this more effectively by looking after the rumen. Feed a diet that contains plenty of effective and digestible fibre and avoid excessive amounts of rapidly fermented carbohydrates. This will encourage high levels of fermentation by rumen microbes and maintain an optimal rumen pH which in turn will result in increased butterfat production.

The other benefits associated with palm oil products can be achieved with significantly lower environmental impact by feeding Dynalac which is a palm free, rumen inert fatty acid supplement.

At 27MJ/kgDM, Dynalac has the same energy as a calcium soap (NRC 2001) so it increases energy density of the diet which is crucial for today’s high yielding dairy cows, especially in early lactation. Dynalac also supplies C18:1 fatty acid, to reduce body condition loss, especially in early lactation.

In addition, Dynalac contains long chain omega 3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA) to support fertility and also give the immune system a boost.

All this means Dynalac will help cows settle into lactation better and have a positive impact on body condition, fertility and overall production and profitability.

Dynalac offers dairy farmers a real alternative to palm oil which will keep cows performing, while reducing the impact on the environment.

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