Printer Friendly


Byline: M. Ali, H. A. Mehboob, M. A. Mirza, H. Raza and M. Osredkar


Nowadays, hydrolysable tannin has been introduced to improve the protein utilization in ruminants. The objective of this study was to determine the effect of hydrolysable tannin on production performance (milk production and composition) of dairy crossbred cows. In this experiment, 12 crossbred lactating cows (average milk production 10 liters/day) were used in this experiment. The cows were randomly divided into four groups (A, B, C and D). In group A, animals were fed basal diet without supplementation of hydrolysable tannin, however; the animals in groups B, C and D fed basal diet with 20, 30 and 40 g hydrolysable tannin per day, respectively. Duration of the study was 55 days including 10 days of adaptation period. Milk yield was daily (morning and evening) recorded during the experimental period. For milk composition analyses, the milk sample was collected fortnightly from each cow. Milk samples were analyzed for milk protein, fat, lactose, total solids and milk urea contents.

Results showed that the milk production was found significantly higher (P0.05) between groups. However, the milk protein and lactose (%) were increased with supplementation of hydrolysable tannin. There was reduction in milk urea content of animals fed diet with hydrolysable tannin supplementation but highest drop was observed in group B. The supplementation of hydrolysable tannin also results in the reduction of somatic cell count. From results of this study, it is concluded that hydrolysable tannin supplementation improves milk production and udder health.

Keywords: Hydrolysable tannin, dairy cows, milk yield, milk composition, somatic cell count.


The objective of livestock production system is to meet energy and protein requirements of animals for better health of animals and maximum economic benefits. The economics of feeding depends on feed intake, cost of feed as well as feed efficiency. Different approaches are being used to enhance feed efficiency. Tannin is considered to increase feed efficiency in animals. There are two types of tannin; condensed tannin and hydrolysable tannin. Within a pH range of 3.5 to 7.0, tannins bind to certain proteins. At pH 8.5, the tannin-protein complexes are dissociated. The hydrolysable tannin consists of a carbohydrate moiety in which the hydroxyl groups are esterified to gallic acid or m-digallic acid (gallotannins) or hexahydroxydiphenic acid (ellagitannins) (Mangan, 1988). The hydrolysable tannin supplementation in diet of dairy animals maximizes amino acids supply in the intestine and prevents degradation of protein in the rumen.

It ultimately minimizes losses of protein in form of methane and urinary nitrogen. Tannins may improve protein utilization in ruminants (Mueller-Harvey, 2006). Tannins make bond with protein in range of pH 3.5-7, as increase intestinal dietary protein and overall animal performance in sense of body weight, milk production and reproductive performance. Tannins also caused slow degradation of plant protein in the rumen which improves dietary N utilization (Min and Hart 2003). Addition of chestnut tannins at 4g/kg of CP in grass silage fed to steers reduced ruminal degradability, 10 % increase in the duodenal non-amino acid N flow and more CP apparent digestion in the intestine (Decruyenaere et al., 1996). Tannins from Lotus corniculatus also caused increase in absorption of essential amino acid upto 62% in small intestine (Waghorn et al., 1987). Losses of urinary nitrogen were lower but higher fecal nitrogen losses in feces for silage contained tannins.

After adaptation, hydrolysable tannin may provide nutrients for absorption but the condensed tannin limit the availability of DM for digestion (Lowry et al., 1996). Alfalfa treated with 4-6% tannins cause more protein digestibility in intestine which might be due to reduction in proteolysis in rumen (McSweeney et al., 2001).

Nowadays, hydrolysable tannin from chestnut is used as a feed additive to increase the nutrients digestion and absorption in the intestinal tract of dairy cows. Forages with low condensed tannin have positive effects on milk yield and composition due to efficient utilization of essential amino acids. Degradation of protein in rumen results in production of ammonia which is converted into urea and may cause alkalosis. There may be degradation of 70% of soluble forage protein (Barry and Manley 1984), converted into ammonia by deamination of amino acids. There is no scope in organic animal farming of formaldehyde (IFOAM, 2006).

The present study was conducted with objective of investigating the effect of different levels of hydrolysable tannin on milk yield and composition of crossbred dairy cows.


Product Information: Farmatan SCC(r) is a mixture of mainly hydrolysable tannin (castalagin and vescalagin) extracted from chestnut tree, essential oils (eugenol and cinnamaldehyde) and zinc in chelated form (Tanin Sevnica, Slovenia).

Animals and Diet: This study was conducted at Livestock Experiment Farm, University of Agriculture Faisalabad, Pakistan during early summer months (March-April, 2015). Twelve cross-bred (Friesian and Sahiwal/Cholistani cross) dairy cows (average milk yield 10 liters/day, average lactation number 3-4, average age 62 years and average body weight 40030 kg) were selected. Selected cows were divided into four groups; A, B, C and D (3 cows per group) and each cow act as replicate. Group A (control) was fed diet without hydrolysable tannin supplementation. Hydrolysable tannin was supplemented in the diet of groups B, C and D at 20, 30 and 40 g /day, respectively. Each cow was fed berseem mixed with wheat straw (ad-libitum), 2 kg concentrate (1kg/milking time), 2 kg maize oil cake (1kg/ milking time) and 1 kg corn gluten (0.5 kg/ milking time). Hydrolysable tannin was mixed with concentrate to ensure its intake. Ingredient and chemical composition of concentrate is presented in Table 1.

Chemical Analysis: Chemical analyses were performed in laboratory of Institute of Animal Sciences, University of Agriculture, Faisalabad. Feed samples were analyzed for DM, CP and NDF. The DM content was determined by oven drying at 104degC for 24 h. Nitrogen (N) was determined by Kjeldhal method and CP was calculated as N 6.25. The NDF was determined following method of Van Soest et al. (1991) with sodium sulphite. Milk yield was recorded daily at morning and evening. Fortnightly, milk samples were collected from each cow for composition analysis. Milk samples were analyzed for protein, fat, lactose, milk urea and total solids contents. Fat was determined by Gerber method as described by Pearson (1976). Milk lactose analysis was done following Lane and Eynon titration method as described by Egan et al. (1981) and milk protein was determined according to the method described by Davide (1977). Total milk solids were determined by formula devised by Richmond et al. (1942).

The concentration of milk urea was determined in an auto analyzer using the method of Talke and Schubert (1965). Somatic cell count (SCC) was determined on day 5 and 45 of experiment as explained by Barratt et al. (2003).

Statistical Analysis: Data of milk yield and composition were statistically analyzed using GLM procedure of SAS 9.2 (SAS, 2009).The model used was:


where, Yij is the dependent variable; the overall mean; TDi is the fixed effect of treatment doses (i = 1-3) of hydrolysable tannin; eij is the residual error.


Milk production: Milk production data of experimental groups is presented in table 2. Milk production was not different (P>0.05) in groups during adaptation (Table 2). However, the highest milk production (12.50 kg) was found in group D on day 15. The difference in milk production between groups was found significant at day 15 (P<0.05), day 30 (P<0.01) and day 45 (P<0.001) for each period. The difference in milk production between groups was statistically significant (P<0.05) at day 15 (Table 2), whereas the difference among groups for milk production at day 30 of research trial was highly significant (P<0.01). Milk production at end of experiment was highly different (P0.05) difference between groups in milk lactose content (Table 3). There was increase in milk lactose on day 45 (Table 3). Highest increase in milk lactose was found in group B and D. There was increase (day 15, day 45) in milk lactose content for group B, but milk lactose content was decreased on day 30 (Table 3). There was no difference (P>0.05) in milk total solids for milk samples analyzed fortnightly (Table 3). The differences in milk total solids were non-significant (P>0.05) in all experimental groups.

Milk Urea and Somatic Cell Count: Table 4 shows milk urea data of experimental groups. Milk urea content was decreased in supplemented groups (Table 4). There was difference (P<0.05) in milk urea content between groups at day 1, 15 and 45 (Table 4). Difference in milk urea content was highly significant (P0.05)

Table 4. Milk urea (mg/dl) of samples collected on day 1, 15, 30 and 45 of research trial.

###Days###Experimental groups1###SEM2###Significance


###Day 1###41.33###45.67###34.33###30.00###3.50###*

###Day 15###40.00###26.00###30.33###26.33###3.26###*

###Day 30###37.33###20.00###23.67###19.00###4.23###**

###Day 45###32.33###21.00###24.33###20.67###2.71###*

Table 5. Somatic cell count in milk samples of experimental animals at day 5 and 45 of trial.

###Experimental groups1


###At day 5###At day 45






Milk Production: Total milk production was found highest in group D compared to other treatment groups Difference (P<0.01) was more in milk production at day 30 of research trial. Milk production between groups was highly different (P<0.001) at day 45. This is in accordance to Dubey (2007) who reported significant increase in milk yield from 9.44 to 10.35 kg/day/cow by adding 3% tannin from Acacia nilotica pods in crossbred cows. Kushwaha et al. (2012) reported no effect of condensed tannin in ewes grazing Lotus corniculatus in early lactation but there was increase in milk yield by 2 liters during mid and late lactation. No change in milk production and milk composition was observed by addition of Quebracho Condensed Tannin reported by Benchaar et al. (2008). In the study of Colombini et al. (2010), milk yield was also not affected by offering silage treated with tannin.

Similar results were also reported by Benchaar et al. (2008) but Colombini et al. (2010) reported slight increase in fat corrected milk (P0.05) among all groups for milk samples collected at day 15, 30 and 45. However milk protein was increased in hydrolysable tannin supplemented groups (C and D). Similar trend observed by Barman (2004) who reported inclusion of 4% tannin from Acacia nilotica increased milk protein (%) in lactating crossbred cows. Similarly, feeding of Lotus corniculatus than perennial grass increased milk protein by 10% (Harris et al., 1998).

Oresnik (1996) found increased in milk protein by 0.15% by inclusion of chestnut tannin in diet, which is in accordance to the results of Bhatta et al. (2000) who reported significant difference (P0.05) between groups. Bhatta et al. (2000) reported no difference in milk lactose for control and treatment groups (supplemented with tamarind seed husk at 2.5% and 7.5%). Milk total solids were constant in all treatment groups but were reduced about 1% in control group on day 45. This difference was not significant (P>0.05) between groups. No change in milk solids was observed in 3 and 4.5% tannin (Kushwaha et al., 2012). Same trend was observed on inclusion of 4% (Barman and Rai 2008) and 3% (Dubey 2007) babul pods in total mixed ration of lactating cows.

Milk Urea and Somatic Cell Count: In the present study, the lowest milk urea (19 mg/dl) was in group D on day 30 but maximum drop (24 mg/dl) was observed in milk urea of group B at the end of trial. Milk urea content was highly different (P<0.01) between groups on day 30. Lavrencic et al. (2006) reported difference in milk urea was not significant but there was decrease in milk urea in chestnut tannin supplemented group which indicated decrease in rumen protein degradability, resulting in lowered ammonia. Lavrencic et al. (2006) explained that addition of tannin upto 5% have positive effect on animal performance.

In the present study, milk somatic cell count was found lower in all treatment groups as these may be due to inclusion of zinc mineral in supplemented product as zinc has role in optimizing cellular immune response and for better health of epithelial and mammary tissues (Cook-Mills and Fraker, 1993). Zinc also play role in the prevention of bacterial entry within teat canal by formation of keratin which entrap these bacteria (Craven and Williams, 1985).

Conclusions: Hydrolysable tannin incorporation in the concentrate mixture of crossbred lactating cows showed significant improvement in milk yield, milk quality and udder health status, whereas there was no effect on milk protein, lactose, fat and total solids. Supplementation of hydrolysable tannin at 40 g indicated better performance of dairy crossbred cows. Therefore, it may be concluded that hydrolysable tannin can be used to get optimum performance from lactating cows.

Acknowledgements: The authors are thankful to laboratory staff of Institute of Animal Science and Institute of Dairy Science for performing the chemical analysis.


Barman, K. (2004). Biodegradation of tanniniferous feeds and their influence on nutrient utilization and productivity of dairy animals. Ph.D. Thesis. Submitted to NDRI (Deemed University), Karnal, Haryana.

Barratt, K., K. Leslie, and A. Bashiri (2003). An evaluation of the Porta SCCTM for determining udder health status in dairy cows at drying off. Proceedings NMC 42nd Annual Meeting. Pp. 280-281.

Barry, T.N. and T.R. Manley (1984). The role of condensed tannin in the nutritional value of Lotus Pedunculatus for sheep. 2. Quantitative digestion of carbohydrates and proteins. Br. J. Nutr. 51: 493-504.

Barry, T.N., T.R. Manley, and S.J. Duncun (1986). The role of condensed tannins in the nutritional value of Lotus pedunculatus for sheep. 4. Sites of carbohydrate and protein digestion as influenced by dietary reactive tannin concentration. Br. J. Nutr. 55: 123-137.

Benchaar, C., T.A. McAllister, and P.Y. Chouinard (2008). Digestion, ruminal fermentation, ciliate protozoal populations, and milk production from dairy cows fed cinnamaldehyde, quebracho condensed tannin, or Yucca schidigera saponin extracts. J. Dairy Sci. 91: 4765-4777.

Bhatta, R., U. Krishnamoorthy, and F. Mohammed. (2000). Effect of feeding tamarind (Tamarindus indica) seed husk as a source of tannin on dry matter intake, digestibility of nutrients and production performance of crossbred dairy cows in mid-lactation. Anim. Feed Sci. Tech. 83: 67-74.

Colombini, S., G. Colombari, G.M. Crovetto, G. Galassi, and L. Rapetti (2010). Tannin treated ydroly silage in dairy cow feeding. Italian J. Anim. Sci. 8: 289-291.

Cook-Mills, J. M. and P.J. Fraker (1993). The role of metals in the production of toxic oxygen metabolites by mononuclear phagocytes. P. 127 in Nutrition Modulation of the Immune Responses. S. Cunningham-Rundles, Ed. Marcel Dekker, New York, NY.

Craven, N. and M.R. Williams (1985). Defenses of the bovine mammary gland against infection and prospects for their enhancement. Vet. Immunol. Immunop. 10: 71-127.

Davide, C.L. (1977). Laboratory Guide in Dairy Chemistry Practical.FAO Regional Dairy Development and Training Center for Asia and the Pacific, Phillipines. Dairy Training and Research Institute, Univ. Phillipines Los Bamos College, Langnene.

Decruyenaere, V., Remond, D., Zimmer, N., Poncet, C., Jebri, A., Thewis, A. Effet des ydroly de chtaignier sur la digestion in sacco et in vivo des matires azotees chez le ruminants. Renc. Rech. Rumin. 1996: 93-96.

Dubey, D. (2007). Studies on degradation of tannins from Acacia nilotica pods and their influence on nutrient utilization, milk production and reproduction in dairy animals. Ph.D. Thesis. NDRI (Deemed University), Karnal, Haryana.

Egan, H., R.S. Kirk, and R. Sawyer (1981). Pearson's Chemical Analysis of Foods, 8th Ed. Longman Scientific and Technical, London.

Errante, J., S. Barbera, and C. Baldi (1998). Use of hydrolysable tannins in high productive dairy cattle diets. Krmiva 40: 257-261.

Harris, S.L., D.A. Clark, and P.J. Laboyrie (1998). Birdsfoot trefoil-an alternative legume for New Zealand dairy pastures. In Proceedings of the New Zealand Grassland Association, pp. 99-104.

International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements (IFOAM) (2006). Proceedings of the First International Conference of Animal in Organic Production, Minnesota University, St. Paul, Minnesota, USA, August, 23-25.

Kushwaha, R., S.N. Rai, and A.K. Singh (2012). Influence of feeding Acacia nilotica pods on intake, nutrient utilization and immune status in pregnant goats. Indian J. Anim. Res. 46: 8-14.

Lavrencic, A., J. Lloveras, A. Gonzalez-Rodriguez, O. Vazquez-Yanez, J. Pineiro, O. Santamaria, and M.J. Poblaciones (2006). Effect of ydrolysable tannin extract on bovine milk production and composition. In Sustainable grassland productivity: Proceedings of the 21st General Meeting of the European Grassland Federation, Badajoz, Spain, 3-6 April, (2006). Pp 586-588.

Makkar, H.P.S. (2003). Effects and fate of tannins in ruminant animals, adaptation to tannins and strategies to overcome detrimental effects of feeding tannin-rich feeds. Small Rumin. Res. 49: 241-256.

Mangan, J.L. (1988). Nutritional effects of tannins in animal feeds. Nutr. Res. Rev. 1: 209-231.

McSweeney, C. S., B. Palmer, D. M. McNeill, and D. O. Krause. (2001). Microbial interactions with tannins: nutritional consequences for ruminants. Anim. Feed Sci. Technol. 91: 83-93.

Min, B.R. and S.P. Hart (2003). Tannins for suppression of internal parasites. J. Anim. Sci. 81: 102-109.

Mueller-Harvey, I. (2006). Unraveling the conundrum of tannins in animal nutrition and health. J. Sci. Food Agric. 86: 2010-2037.

Oresnik, A. (1996). The effect of chestnut tannins on milk protein content in dairy cattle. Krmiva, 38: 21-24.

Pearson, D. (1976). Chemical Analysis of Foods. Churchill Livingstone Edinburgh, London.

Rai, S.N. and P.C. Shukla (1979). Effect of feeding deoiled sal seed meal (DSSM) with urea and molasses diets to milch cows on quantity and quality of milk and blood metabolites. GAU Res. J.

Richmond, H.D., G.D. Elsdon, and G.H. Walker (1942). Dairy Chemistry. 4th Ed. London, G. Griffin and Co.

SAS, (2009). Statistical Analysis System Version 9. 2. SAS Institute Inc., Cary, NC, USA.

Talke, H. and G.A. Shubertm (1965). Enzymatische Harnstofibestimmung in Blut and Serum inoptischen Test nach Warburg. Kim. Wochenschr. 43: 174-175.

Van Soest, P.J., J.B. Roberston, and B.A. Lewis (1991). Methods for dietary fiber, neutral detergent fiber and non-starch polysaccharides in relation to animal nutrition. J. Dairy Sci. 74: 3583-3597.

Waghorn, G.C., M.J. Ulyatt, A. John, and M.T. Fisher (1987). The effect of condensed tannins on the site of digestion of amino acids and other nutrients in sheep fed on Lotus corniculatus L. Br. J. Nutr. 57: 115-126.
COPYRIGHT 2017 Asianet-Pakistan
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2017 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:Journal of Animal and Plant Sciences
Article Type:Report
Date:Aug 31, 2017

Terms of use | Privacy policy | Copyright © 2020 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters