The dairy increased the amount of ration buffer to this level and within months experienced fewer health incidents, improved rumination time, lowered laminitis incidence by 10 percentage points and milk fat production consistently rose 0.2%.
Keep in mind the purpose of buffers is to smooth out the bouts of acidosis that cows will (not “if”) experience from time to time.
While producers will likely see more consistent dry matter intake and solids corrected milk and/or energy corrected milk production brought about by a better and healthier rumen environment, it will likely not be an immediate and dramatic response, but rather an improvement that can be measured over the course of a month or two.
1/ Miller RW, Hemken RW, Waldo DR, Okamoto M, Moore LA. Effect of Feeding Buffers to Dairy Cows Fed a High-Concentrate, Low-Roughage Ration. J Dairy Sci. 48:1455-1458. 1965.
2/ Shaver RD. Feed Delivery and Bunk Management Aspects of Laminitis in Dairy Herds Fed Total Mixed Rations. University of Wisconsin – Madison. Available at: http://www.uwex.edu/ces/ag/teams/dairy/italy001.pdf. Accessed March 3, 2014.