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The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved feed ingredient Rumensin (monensin sodium) for use in dairy cattle for improving milk production efficiency, Elanco Animal Health reported. The product was already used in dairy heifers to control coccidosis and improve weight gain.
The new claim reads: "Rumensin is indicated for increased milk production efficiency (production of marketable solids-corrected milk per unit of feed intake)."
Trial results showed that cows fed Rumensin were 2 to 4 percent more efficient in producing more milk per pound of feed, Elanco reported.
"This approval is a breakthrough for the U.S. dairy industry in that [it] results in increased milk production efficiency, which is a key component of dairy profitability," said Patrick James, president of Elanco. "With this approval, the FDA is helping the industry recognize production efficiency as an emerging metric of performance for dairy operations."
Rumensin increases the production of propionic acid (a relatively efficient volatile fatty acid that converts feed energy into usable energy) and decreased the proportion of less-efficient volatile fatty acids and waste products such as methane, Elanco reported.
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