Silage


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silage

(sī`lĭj) or

ensilage

(ĕn`səlĭj), succulent, moist feed made by storing a green crop in a silosilo,
watertight and airtight structure for making and storing silage. Silos vary in form from a covered pit, such as was used by the early Romans, to the modern storage tower, dating from the 19th cent.
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. The crop most used for silage is corn; others are sorghum, sunflowers, legumes, and grass. In a sealed silo, typically in the past a tall cylindrical structure but often today in a surface pile covered tightly with heavy-gauge plastic, the crop ferments for about one month. This fermentation process, called ensiling, produces acids and consumes the oxygen in the silo, preserving the plant material. In pit ensiling, compacted silage ferments in an unsealed underground enclosure. Silage replaces or supplements hay for cattle, horses, and sheep. It is rich in carotene, an important source of vitamin A. A machine called an ensilage harvester cuts and chops the crop in one operation, preparing it for storage in the silo.

Bibliography

See publications of the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture.

Silage

 

a succulent feed preserved in an airtight container. Corn, potato, sunflower, vetch-and-oat, and other silages are distinguished. Silage is close in nutritive value to the green material that is ensiled. Carotene and vitamin C are preserved in silage, as are smaller quantities of water-soluble sugars. Organic acids are also present: lactic acid (up to 2 percent), acetic acid (up to 0.6 percent), and, in certain types of silage, propionic and valeric acids. When improper ensiling and storage procedures are employed, butyric acid may be present.

The feed value of silage depends on the ensiling method, on storage conditions, and on the type of plants used and their stage of development at harvesting. One hundred kg of sunflower silage contain approximately 16 feed units, 1.4 kg of digestible protein, 350 g of calcium, 160 g of phosphorus, and 1,500 mg of carotene. An equal amount of corn silage has approximately 20 feed units, 1.4 kg of digestible protein, 150 g of calcium, 50 g of phosphorus, and 1,500 mg of carotene. In 100 kg of alfalfa silage there are 18 feed units, 2.9 kg of digestible protein, 600 g of calcium, 60 g of phosphorus, and 2,500 mg of carotene.

Good silage is pale olive or yellowish in color; silage that has been exposed to a great deal of heat is dark brown. The odor of silage is reminiscent of sauerkraut or of soaked apples; it is sometimes fruity. When a great deal of warming has taken place, the odor resembles that of freshly baked bread or of honey. Spoiled silage smells like spoiled herring or manure. Silage must be crumbly in texture; an oily consistency indicates spoilage. With a moisture content of approximately 70 percent, the pH of good silage is 4.2. When the moisture content is 65 percent, the pH is somewhat higher.

The consumption of silage improves digestion and facilitates better utilization of other feeds, especially roughage. All farm animals are fed silage. Silage may constitute as much as 50 percent of the nutritive value in rations for dairy and beef cattle and as much as 20 percent in rations for swine. Special silage is prepared for calves, swine, and poultry. Silage for calves is prepared from legumes, soft cereals, and mixtures of legumes and cereals harvested during the early stages of development. For swine, combinations are used, consisting chiefly of sugar beets, carrots, potatoes, melons, and corn cobs. Silage for poultry consists of legumes, vitamin-rich gourds, carrots, beet tops, and sugar-beet roots. Silage is fed in the winter and, in arid regions, in the summer as well. In the USSR the total consumption of silage by cattle and poultry was 166.7 million tons in 1965 and 185.3 million tons in 1974.

S. IA. ZAFREN

silage

[′sī·lij]
(agriculture)
Green or mature fodder that is fermented to retard spoilage and produce a succulent winter feed for livestock.

Silage

Synchronous DSP specification language.

["Silage Reference Manual, Draft 1.0", D.R. Genin & P.N. Hilfinger, Silvar-Lisco, Leuven 1989].
References in periodicals archive ?
Inoculants thus help eliminate all the aerobic microorganisms as they produce lots of acids that denature the aerobic microorganisms such that if compact within seven days, the silage is safe.
Sumaoang's Novatech, on the other hand, provides the expertise in producing silage that is enriched with enzymes and probiotics for enhanced nutritional value of the feed.
The concept of using a microbial inoculant for silage involves adding fast-growing homofermentative LAB in order to dominate the fermentation, thereby producing higher quality silage.
The designed plan of experimental glucose treatments included: (C) control silage without additive; (G1) glucose 1% on fresh matter basis; (G2) glucose 2% on fresh matter basis; (G3) glucose 3% on fresh matter basis; LAB1 commercial lactic acid bacteria (L.
Microbiological assessments of the silages were conducted at the Laboratory of Food Analysis of the Department of Technology and Food Science of UEL, where 25 g fresh silage samples from each of the treatments were taken and diluted in 225 mL deionized water to prepare the aqueous extract.
The correlation between in vitro parameters and chemical composition of silage are shown in table 2.
This year, the silage analyses were sponsored by Agri-Lloyd on behalf of the Federation of Welsh Grassland Societies (FWGS).
Lactic acid is responsible for the acidic nature of silage and inhibits the growth of undesirable microorganisms and plant enzymatic activities.
He added that farmers of the developed countries were using silage as fodder for their animals instead of fresh fodder but in Pakistan, farmers are still away from getting benefits from silage due
But, of late, it is there because all major crops have failed to fetch money for farmers at one stage or another, owing to regular price crashes; and created vacuum for silage to flourish.
Why silage is more preferable for feeding livestock?