The following information was provided by Rock River Laboratory in Watertown, Wis.

Interest in protein quality has been building as nutritionists and consultants recognize protein damage caused by poor fermentation (excessive heat) and drying processes (also related to heat).

Heat-treating protein supplements can be a good thing to increase rumen undegraded protein content (RUP), but too much heat can make the protein so undegradable that it's not even available for digestion in the intestines! Heat can also damage individual (and very important) amino acids like lysine.

As part of its continued expansion into digestion analytics, Rock River Laboratory is now following in the footsteps of great scientists and researchers in measuring both RUP and then intestinal digestibility.

Rock River has incubated feedstuffs in the rumen of lactating cows to measure RUP and then an in vitro (outside the cow) technique to measure intestinal digestion — with some interesting results. With better digestibility estimates, Rock River is helping nutritionists optimize ration protein and amino acid levels, along with helping to reduce protein waste.

For more information on customizing a digestion analytic to suit your needs, visit or call John Goeser at (920) 261-0446.