Lactobacillus plantarum, a homofermentative bacteria, is the driving force behind the rapid fermentation action, quickly becoming the dominant species in your silage, outcompeting invasive bacteria (such as Clostridia and Listeria). This bacteria produces large quantities of lactic acid, lowering the pH of your silage to ~5, killing off any residual invasive bacteria and creating conditions under which other pathogenic bacteria cannot survive.
The first heterofermentative bacteria starts working alongside the Lactobacillus plantarum, producing a mixture of lactic and acetic acid. The acetic acid provides invaluable protection against fungi and yeasts, including mycotoxin producing fungi. A common misconception is the association of acetic acid in silage with spoilage. Spoilage is often the result of Clostridia contamination, which can also secrete acetic acid as a byproduct. However, the acetic acid is not the cause of the spoilage, and when secreted by our Lactobacillus strains it actively prevents fungal contamination and therefore improves stability.
Once the first two strains have created acidic conditions of around pH 5, our third strain of bacteria starts to populate the silage. Our third Lactobacillus strain, another heterofermenter is optimised for growing at low pH conditions. This Lactobacillus grows steadily in the later stages of ensiling, and continues to secrete low levels of lactic and acetic acid. This ensures long term protection against contamination without dropping the pH too low, and strong air stability once the clamp face is opened and during feed out.
The unique combination of these three bacterial strains create optimum conditions for fast, stable preservation, maximise palatability and nutrient availability whilst minimising the contamination with bacteria, yeasts and mycotoxin producing fungi. The inoculant has proven effective on many farms, over a wide range of crop types and dry matters in the UK and abroad.
How do I apply the inoculant to maize and wholecrop?
OptiSile® Maize/Wholecrop silage additives come in freeze-dried powder form and simply needs mixing with water prior to application. This makes it suitable for low volume application without wastage.
See farmer reviews and more on OptiSile Extra® in Read More below.
“We’ve used OptiSile additives on our grass and maize for a number of years. They keep the clamp stable and cool – and they’ve always done exactly as promised – even in the toughest of years for weather. The cows love it!”
Richard Fernihough, Lawton Hall Farm, Staffordshire
“It is important to feed enough silage in the TMR and not over feed concentrates. Once the diet is set and the herd is achieving the yield expected, challenge the silage by taking out concentrate and replacing with more silage. This way the silage is allowed to express its true potential.
All silage costs the same to grow and ensile. It is therefore worth spending a little more on a good inoculant to maintain all the nutrients and protect against spoilage and secondary fermentation – and get as much of the available energy as you can.”
James Rogerson, Game Farm, Lancashire
What is the EnviroSystems BioCircle® and how does OptiSile Maize/Wholecrop silage additive fit into this?
OptiSile® Maize/Wholecrop inoculants fit into the EnviroSystems’ BioCircle concept by helping to preserve the nutrients in the grass, maximising the nutrient transfer from soil to cow. This increase in nutrients leads to improved cow health, and a greater milk-from-forage conversion.
The sustainable choice for your farm
Additionally, by preserving the nutrients in your forage, we reduce losses to the atmosphere, including DM losses as CO2, resulting in a more efficient and sustainable farming practice
Protect your silage and it’ll pay dividends
Ensiling crops is fundamentally based on nutrient preservation to ensure a high-quality feed out of forage over the winter months. Nutritionally, this means ensuring you maintain the dry matter of your silage in order to end up with the highest possible energy and protein values. This should help to achieve high palatability, intake and digestibility values ensuring the preserved nutrients are available to your cows.
This results in cows eating more forage, increased nutrient intake, higher milk-from-forage return, all whilst requiring less bought in feed, thereby offering a double return on investment.
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