Feeding cows with hay, silage, or fresh herbage on pasture or indoors affects sensory properties and chemical composition of milk and cheese
- Journal Article
In European countries, silage-free feeding is an ancient tradition and has a particularly positive reputation among consumers. In the present study, we compared grass-based forages from the same plot conserved as hay or silage or fed fresh either on pasture or indoors, and we evaluated the differences in sensory properties of milk and uncooked pressed cheese. All herbage from the first cut of a grassland dominated by perennial ryegrass was harvested on the same day and preserved either as hay or silage. The first regrowth of the same plot was used for strip grazing or green feeding indoors. Balanced by breed, 24 Montbéliarde and 24 Holstein cows were allocated to the 4 treatments. Apart from the forages, the late-lactation cows received 3 kg/d of dry matter from concentrate. After 2 wk of dietary adaptation, the bulk milk of 3 subgroups, each with 4 cows, was collected. Part of the milk was pasteurized, and part was left raw and partly transformed to small-sized Cantal-type cheese ripened for 9 wk. Milk and cheese underwent descriptive sensory analysis by a trained sensory panel, as well as analyses of physicochemical traits. Volatile organic compounds of the cheeses were also analyzed. Raw and pasteurized milk from hay-fed cows had less intense odors of cooked milk, cream, and barnyard than milk from grazing cows, whereby the effect of pasteurization did not differ between herbage utilization methods. Cheeses obtained from cows fed fresh herbage (grazing and indoors) were clearly yellower than cheeses from silage- and hay-fed cows, which coincided with the color intensity perceived by the panelists. Moreover, cheeses from cows fed fresh herbage had more intense barnyard and dry fruit flavors, were perceived as creamier and having less lactic odor, and exhibited more fat exudation than those from cows fed conserved herbage. Only a few differences were observed in milk and cheeses from hay-fed compared with silage-fed cows, and those differences were far less pronounced than those of milk and cheeses from cows fed fresh herbage. In conclusion, the present study did not substantiate assumptions of clear sensory differences of milk and uncooked pressed cheese from hay-fed compared with silage-fed cows. For the first time, this study reports that the global flavor intensity of cheeses from indoor green-fed cows is similar to that of cheeses derived from cows fed conserved forages, whereas cheeses from grazing cows have the greatest global flavor intensity. Show more
Journal / seriesJournal of Dairy Science
Pages / Article No.
Subjectherbage utilization method; dairy cow; milk sensory profile; cheese sensory profile
Organisational unit03428 - Kreuzer, Michael (emeritus) / Kreuzer, Michael (emeritus)
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