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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2021

Composition and properties of bovine milk: A study from dairy farms in northern Sweden; Part I. Effect of dairy farming system

Priyashantha, Hasitha; Lundh, Åse; Höjer, Annika; Bernes, Gun; Nilsson, David; Hetta, Mårten; Hallin Saedén, Karin; Gustafsson, Anders H.; Johansson, Monika

Abstract

This study was part of a larger project that aimed to understand the causes for increasing variation in cheese ripening in a cheese-producing region in northern Sweden. The influence of different on-farm factors on raw milk composition and properties was investigated and is described in this paper, whereas the monthly variation in the milk quality traits during 1 yr is described in our companion paper. The dairy farming systems on a total of 42 dairy farms were characterized through a questionnaire and farm visits. Milk from farm tanks was sampled monthly over 1 yr and analyzed for quality attributes important for cheese making. On applying principal component analyses to evaluate the variation in on-farm factors, different types of farms were distinguished. Farms with loose housing and automatic milking system (AMS) or milking parlor had a higher number of lactating cows, and predominantly Swedish Holstein (SH) breed. Farms associated with tiestalls had a lower number of lactating cows and breeds other than SH. Applying principal component analyses to study the variation in composition and properties of tank milk samples from farms revealed a tendency for the formation of 2 clusters: milk from farms with AMS or a milking parlor, and milk from farms with tiestall milking. The interaction between the milking system, housing system, and breed probably contributed to this grouping. Other factors that were used in the characterization of the farming systems only showed a minor influence on raw milk quality. Despite the interaction, milk from tiestall farms with various cow breeds had higher concentrations (g/100 g of milk) of fat (4.74) and protein (3.63), and lower lactose concentrations (4.67) than milk from farms with predominantly SH cows and AMS (4.32, 3.47, and 4.74 g/100 g of milk, respectively) or a milking parlor (4.47, 3.54, and 4.79 g/100 g of milk, respectively). Higher somatic cell count (195 x 10(3)/mL) and lower free fatty acid concentration (0.75 mmol/100 g of fat) were observed in milk from farms with AMS than in milk from tiestall systems (150 x 10(3)/mL and 0.83 mmol/100 g of fat, respectively). Type of farm influenced milk gel strength, with milk from farms with predominantly SH cows showing the lowest gel strength (65.0 Pa), but not a longer rennet coagulation time. Effects of dairy farming system (e.g., dominant breed, milking system, housing, and herd size) on milk quality attributes indicate a need for further studies to evaluate the in-depth effects of farm-related factors on milk quality attributes.

Keywords

farm management factor; milking system; dominant breed; raw milk quality; milk coagulation property

Published in

Journal of Dairy Science
2021, volume: 104, number: 8, pages: 8582-8594

Authors' information

Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Molecular Sciences
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Molecular Sciences
Höjer, Annika
Norrmejerier Ek Förening
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Agricultural Research for Northern Sweden
Nilsson, David
Umeå University
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Agricultural Research for Northern Sweden
Hallin Saedén, Karin
Norrmejerier Ekonomisk Förening
Gustafsson, Anders H.
Växa Sverige
Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Department of Molecular Sciences

UKÄ Subject classification

Animal and Dairy Science

Publication Identifiers

DOI: https://doi.org/10.3168/jds.2020-19650

URI (permanent link to this page)

https://res.slu.se/id/publ/112279