Review: Converting nutritional knowledge into feeding practices: A case study comparing different protein feeding systems for dairy cows

H. Lapierre*, M. Larsen, D. Sauvant, M.E. van Amburgh, G. van Duinkerken

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Improving milk nitrogen efficiency through a reduction of CP supply without detrimental effect on productivity requires usage of feeding systems estimating both the flows of digestible protein, the exported true proteins and from these predict milk protein yield (MPY). Five feeding systems were compared in their ability to predict MPY v. observed MPY in two studies where either protein supply or protein and energy supply were changed. The five feedings systems were: Cornell Net Carbohydrate and Protein System (v6.5.5), Dutch protein evaluation system (1991 and 2007), Institut National de la Recherche Agronomique in France (INRA), National Research Council and NorFor. The key characteristic of the systems with the best predicted MPY was the inclusion of a variable efficiency of utilisation of protein supply taking into account the supply of both protein and energy. The systems still using a fixed efficiency had the highest slope bias in their prediction of MPY. Therefore, the development of new feeding systems or improvement of existing systems should include a variable efficiency of utilisation of the protein related to both the protein and energy supply. The limitation of the current comparison did not allow determining if additional factors, as used in INRA, were beneficial. This concept should also probably be transferred to essential amino acids.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)s457-s466
Issue numbers2
Early online date24 Aug 2018
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2018



  • dairy cows
  • energy
  • feeding system
  • milk protein yield
  • protein

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