Cumberland Valley Analytical Services (CVAS) has recently started offering an expanded fermentation analysis panel. These additional evaluations include alcohols, acetates, and lactates. This allows the nutritionist to consider constituents beyond the standard evaluations for lactic, acetic, butyric, and iso-butyric acids.

Does the silage smell unusual, perhaps with an odor of acetone? Is the silage feeding with unexpected cow response or lower dry matter intakes? This diagnostic package may shed light on unusual fermentations.

As CVAS collects data on these fermentation parameters, they will be summarized and made available as part of the report. Additional information on this analysis may be found at under "News."

An example fermentation analysis with alcohols, acetates, and lactates is provided below. These constituents are run using gas chromatography. Full reports include expected ranges and target ranges which are omitted here.

Feed Type Corn Silage
Dry Matter 31.8%
pH 3.93
Titratable Acidity 9.43  (meq NaOH)
Ammonia 19.6 %CP
Total VFA 9.37 %DM
Lactic Acid % Total VFA 46%
Lactic Acid and Volatile Fatty Acids
Lactic Acid 4.33 %DM
Acetic Acid 4.39 %DM
Propionic Acid 0.65 %DM
Butyric Acid ND %DM
Iso-butyric Acid ND %DM
Alcohols, Acetates, and Lactates
1,2 propanediol ND %DM
1‐propanol 1.270 %DM
Methanol 0.023 %DM
Ethanol 0.191 %DM
2‐butanol 0.009 %DM
Methyl acetate ND %DM
Ethyl acetate 0.007 %DM
Propyl acetate 0.638 %DM
Ethyl lactate ND %DM
Propyl lactate 0.008 %DM

(ND = non detect)