Effect of Feeding Canola or Sunflower Seeds on Conjugated Linoleic Acid Enrichment in Cow’s Milk Fat

Document Type : Research/Original Article


Department of Animal Science, North Dakota State University, Fargo ND, USA


Two experiments studied the effects of canola or sunflower seed supplementation on conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) concentration in milk fat of lactating cows. In each experiment, only eight cows in early lactation were available to assign to one of two treatments in a completely randomized design and were fed individually for 12 wk. Experiment 1 compared similar diets with or without the addition of ground canola seed [12.1 g/100 g dry matter (DM)]. Cows fed canola had higher cis-9, trans-11 CLA in milk fat at wk 9 and 12 (P<0.05). In experiment 2, treatments were two levels of rolled sunflower seed: low (2.0 g/100 g DM) and high (11.4 g/100 g DM). In experiment 2, cows on the high sunflower diet had greater cis-9, trans-11 CLA in milk fat compared with that of the low sunflower treatment at wk 3 and 12; however, significant individual cow variation existed within the high sunflower treatment. Milk yield, milk composition, and dry matter intake (DMI) were not altered in either experiment. Even given this experiment was not robust, the oilseeds of canola and sunflower increased CLA content in milk fat of lactating cows without negatively affecting milk yield or milk fat concentration.


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Volume 3, Issue 3 - Serial Number 3
September 2013
Pages 439-450
  • Receive Date: 01 May 2012
  • Revise Date: 28 August 2012
  • Accept Date: 27 September 2012
  • First Publish Date: 01 September 2013