An Assessment of Digestibility and Protein Quality of the Fresh and Ensiled Amaranth Forage, According to CNCPS



Quality of protein fractions, according to Cornell Net Carbohydrate and Protein System (CNCPS), and digestibility coefficients, using Tilley and Terry procedure, of the fresh and ensiled amaranth (Amaranthus hypochondriacus) forage were assessed. The concentration of Crude Protein (CP) and True Protein (TP) in the fresh forage, were respectively 116 and 70 g/kg of DM. Soluble Protein (SP) and A, B1, B2, B3 and C fractions were 411, 395, 16, 349, 158, and 82 g/kg of CP, respectively. Dry Matter Digestibility (DMD), Organic Matter Digestibility (OMD) and Organic Matter Digestible in Dry Matter (OMDDM) of fresh amaranth were respectively 712, 677, and 586 g/kg, and as well Metabolisable Energy (ME) was 9.2 MJ/kg of DM. Ensiling process resulted in increase in CP, SP, and A as well as B1 fractions, while a decline observed in TP, B2, B3 and C fractions (P<0.05). Also, DMD of ensiled amaranth was significantly less than that for fresh forage. On the other hand, it was found that addition of molasses into the silage decreased CP, TP and as well B2, B3 and C fractions, while increasing A and B1 fractions as well as digestibility coefficients (P<0.05). It is finally concluded that based on the moderate CP value and good digestibility, amaranth benefits from the potential as a recommendable livestock forage. Ensiling process decreased digestibility and protein quality, however, addition of molasses to the silage improved the fermentation quality of the final ensiled product.