Bagasse silage from sweet pearl millet and sweet sorghum as influenced by harvest dates and delays between biomass chopping and pressing.

Dos Passos Bernardes, A., Tremblay, G.F., Bélanger, G., Seguin, P., Brégard, A., and Vanasse, A. (2016). "Bagasse silage from sweet pearl millet and sweet sorghum as influenced by harvest dates and delays between biomass chopping and pressing.", BioEnergy Research, 9(1), pp. 88-97. doi : 10.1007/s12155-015-9666-2  Access to full text

Abstract

Bagasse remaining after extracting the juice from crop biomass for ethanol production could be preserved as silage and used in animal feedstock, but the nutritive and conservation attributes of bagasse silage from sweet sorghum (Sorghum bicolor (L.) Moench) and sweet pearl millet (Pennisetum glaucum (L.) R.Br) are not well known. We evaluated the nutritive and conservation attributes of silages made with the bagasse of two species (sweet pearl millet and sweet sorghum) harvested on two dates (August and September) at two sites in Québec (Canada) and ensiled after four delays between biomass chopping and pressing (0.5, 2, 4, and 6 h). Bagasse silages made in laboratory silos were considered well preserved (pH ≤ 4.0, NH3-N < 100 g kg−1 total N, lactate > 30 g kg−1 DM, no propionic and butyric acids) regardless of species, harvest date, or delay between biomass chopping and pressing. Sweet pearl millet and sweet sorghum bagasse silages had similar total N concentration, in vitro true digestibility of dry matter (IVTD), and in vitro neutral detergent fiber digestibility (NDFD). Bagasse silage made from biomass harvested in August rather than in September had a 4 % greater concentration of total N, a 4 % greater IVTD, and a 8 % greater NDFD. The delay between biomass chopping and pressing did not affect the nutritive and conservation attributes of silages. Juice extraction from the biomass of sweet pearl millet and sweet sorghum did not impair attributes of good silage fermentation but it reduced its nutritive value.

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