Grain Buffering is achieved by adding an ingredient or set of ingredients to a sheep or cattle grain diet to neutralize lactic acid. Lactic acid is produced by the sheep’s rumen when feeding cereal grain.

Essentially, feeding any cereal grain to sheep will cause an increase in the production of lactic acid within the rumen. This lactic acid is the cause of grain poisoning or lactic acidosis. In short, the production of lactic acid, at best, harms the animal’s efficiency and, at worst, may cause death.

Naturally Produced Buffer

Sheep naturally produce their own buffers, such as saliva, created when the sheep chews. This buffering can be enhanced by feeding certain minerals, such as Calcium, to aid in the buffering process.

Grain Buffering with Added Probiotics

In addition to this research, see the trial below, where certain live Probiotics added to the rumen in the buffering pellet can also aid in the successful buffering of grain. These Probiotics, Saccharomyces Cerevisiae, work by introducing a constant source of bacteria to the rumen. This constantly competes with the same feed sources as the lactic acid-producing bacteria. In turn, this makes it harder for the lactic acid bacteria to survive, reducing the production of lactic acid, and potentially reducing the incidence of acidosis.

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