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Tannin-rich sainfoin pellet supplementation reduces fat volatile indoles content and delays digestive parasitism in lambs grazing alfalfa

  • D. Rivaroli (a1) (a2), A. Prunier (a3), K. Meteau (a4), I. N. do Prado (a2) and S. Prache (a1)...


Lambs grazing alfalfa or white clover are prone to flavour taint which can be an impediment to consumer acceptance. Here we investigated whether condensed tannin (CT)-rich sainfoin pellet supplementation of lambs grazing alfalfa influences meat sensory quality. Using three groups of 18 male Romane weaned lambs, we compared three feeding regimes: alfalfa grazing (AF), alfalfa grazing + daily supplementation with CT-rich sainfoin pellets (15 g dry matter (DM)/kg live weight, AS) and stall feeding with concentrate and grass hay indoors (SI). We also investigated the potential interest of sainfoin pellet supplementation for controlling digestive parasitism. The sainfoin pellets contained 42 g of CT/kg of DM and they represented on average 36% of the diet in AS lambs. Skatole and indole were detected in most of the AF and AS lambs, whereas in very few SI lambs. Skatole and indole concentrations in perirenal and dorsal fat were lower in the AS lambs than the AF lambs (P < 0.025 to P < 0.001), but the intensity of ‘animal’ odour and ‘animal’ flavour of the chops did not differ between both forage-grazing groups. Longissimus thoracis et lumborum muscle lightness was lower in the AF and AS lambs than the SI lambs (P < 0.001) with the other muscle colour coordinates being unaffected by the treatment and between-treatment group differences in muscle colour coordinates remaining constant throughout the 9-day display period. Subcutaneous fat colour coordinates were not influenced by the treatment. The number of individual anthelmintic drenches necessary to keep nematode faecal egg count below a threshold of 550 eggs/g of faeces was lower in the AS than the AF lambs (0.94 per lamb v. 1.63 per lamb; P < 0.001). Faecal oocyst count was lower in the AS than the AF lambs for the first measurement made 56 days after the beginning of the experiment (P < 0.001) and was not significantly different between both forage-grazing groups thereafter. The use of CT-rich sainfoin pellets to supplement lambs that are concurrently grazing alfalfa reduced fat volatile skatole and indole concentrations and delayed the onset of both helminth and coccidian infections.


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Tannin-rich sainfoin pellet supplementation reduces fat volatile indoles content and delays digestive parasitism in lambs grazing alfalfa

  • D. Rivaroli (a1) (a2), A. Prunier (a3), K. Meteau (a4), I. N. do Prado (a2) and S. Prache (a1)...


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