Free access
Reprod. Nutr. Dev.
Volume 44, Number 5, September-October 2004
Page(s) 467 - 492
Reprod. Nutr. Dev. 44 (2004) 467-492
DOI: 10.1051/rnd:2004052

Dietary lipids and forages interactions on cow and goat milk fatty acid composition and sensory properties

Yves Chilliard and Anne Ferlay

INRA Unité de Recherches sur les Herbivores, Équipe Tissu Adipeux et Lipides du Lait, Theix, 63122 St-Genès-Champanelle, France

Abstract - This review summarises the known effects of dietary factors on bovine and caprine milk fatty acid composition, as well as the regulation of cow and goat mammary lipid secretion. Special attention is given to fatty acids that could play a role for human health, such as saturated fatty acids, oleic acid, n-6- or n-3-C18 to C22 polyunsaturated fatty acids, trans isomers of C18:1 and C18:2, and isomers of conjugated linoleic acid (CLA). The main dietary factors taken into account are the nature of forages, including pasture, the forage:concentrate ratio and diet starch content, and the supplementation of dairy rations with crude or processed vegetable oils or oilseeds, and vitamin E. A particular emphasis is given to studies on interactions between these dietary factors, which show that there is a considerable plasticity of ruminant milk fatty acid composition. Despite the existence of several studies on the effects of dietary factors on the sensorial quality of milk and dairy products, there is a need to evaluate more deeply how the different feeding strategies could change the nutritional, sensorial and technological aspects of milk fat quality.

Key words: dairy cow / dairy goat / forages / oilseeds / milk / fatty acids / human health

Corresponding author: Yves Chilliard

© INRA, EDP Sciences 2004