Digestibility of sugar cane bagasse treated with chemical reagents and steam pressure

In order to increase the sugar cane bagasse digestibility, this agricultural by-product was treated with several chemical reagents with or without physical treatment. After preliminary evaluation, where several delignificant agents were evaluated, ten treatments were selected for more detailed in vitro dry and organic matter disappearance trials. Then, for the in vivo digestibility trial, four sugar cane bagasse based diets were made: 1 - Hydrolyzed sugar cane bagasse, pressure of 17 kgf/cm² per 5 min; 2 - Bagasse treated with 4% Na2S + 6% NaOH, pressure of 12 kgf/cm² for 8 min; 3 - Bagasse treated with 2% Na2S + 3% NaOH, pressure of 12 kgf/cm² for 8 min; 4 - Bagasse treated with 9% H2O2 + 7% NaOH, at 70ºC for 8 min. The bagasse treated with 4% Na2S + 6% NaOH and pressure of 12 kgf/cm² for 8 min exhibited the highest coefficients of digestibility for dry matter, organic matter, neutral detergent fiber and acid detergent fiber, as well as the highest total digestible nutrient values. Secondly, the bagasse treated with 9% H2O2 + 7% NaOH, at 70ºC for 8 min showed the best results. Hydrolyzed sugar cane bagasse presented the worst results. The best digestibility data of some diets, particularly of the fibrous fractions, suggests the possibility of reducing the amount of concentrate meal in chemically/physically treated sugar cane based diets.

agricultural by-product; ruminant nutrition; sodium hydroxide; sodium sulfide

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