Silage Trial Shows Dow Seeds bm3 BMR Increases Milk Potential


The latest research from The William H. Miner Agricultural Research Institute in Chazy, NY confirms that the Dow Seeds™ brand brown midrib-3 (bm3) BMR silage corn leads to increased milk production.
The Miner Institute conducted the trial to evaluate yield and quality for bm1, bm3 and non-BMR hybrids in 2015. Hybrids were arranged in a randomized complete block design with four replicated strips per hybrid (six rows, 500-foot lengths) and planted at 34,000 seeds per acre.  Relative maturity ranged from 95 to 107 days and all plots were harvested on the same day.

Researchers found that Dow Seeds bm3 BMR silage corn has the lowest lignin, and therefore the highest fibre digestibility (NDFD30), which leads to increased milk production per tonne of silage fed.

“The study showed that NDFD30 varied significantly among BMR and non-BMR, with nearly a 10 percentage unit advantage for bm3 compared to non-BMR reinforcing what we’ve always said about our products,” said Bill Webster, Corn Product Manager with Dow Seeds Canada.  “This has important implications for ration formulation, dry matter intake and milk production potential as fibre digestibility and indigestibility can affect feed intake, ruminal turnover, the rate of forage particle breakdown and the efficiency of milk production.”

The study also showed that the bm3 hybrids had significantly lower uNDF120om compared to bm1 and non-BMR as well as significantly lower uNDF240om implying greater fibre digestibility. uNDF240om measures the undigested fibre after 240 hours in the rumen. This is used as an estimate of iNDF (indigestible NDF) which is an indicator of dry matter intake (DMI). The lower the uNDF240om, the greater the DMI. The greater the DMI, the higher the milk production.

“Dow Seeds bm3 BMR also has low uDNDF240om,” said Webster. “So, not only will the cow produce more milk due to the high fibre digestibility, she will also eat more of Dow Seeds BMR which will allow her to produce even more milk. It offers a ‘double whammy’ in effect.”

The authors of the study believe it indicates important nutritional quality differences among the hybrids tested and stresses the need for wise hybrid selection and forage analysis when formulating rations. They also indicated uNDF was a good indicator of fibre digestibility and suggest it could be used as part of a hybrid-ranking tool to evaluate milk production potential.

Dow AgroSciences Canada Inc. brings innovation to life through people, chemistry and biotechnology in the areas of seed and crop production and pest management. Dow AgroSciences Canada Inc. is headquartered in Calgary, Alberta, with commercial and research operations across Canada. Key research facilities include corn and soybean breeding in St. Mary’s and Blenheim, Ontario and a global canola research centre in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. For more information on Dow AgroSciences Canada Inc. and its products, visit


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