Authors:Marina Vranić, Mladen Knežević, Zsolt Seregély, Krešimir Bošnjak, Josip Leto, and Goran Perčulija
Intensive livestock feeding requires constant monitoring of diet composition to ensure a consistent level of milk or meat production. A rapid analysis of fresh grass silage samples for dry matter (DM) and crude protein (CP) content would provide basic, rapid information what would permit decision to be made regarding the need to supplement the diet. The aim of the present study was to determine dry matter (DM) and crude protein (CP) content in fresh grass silage samples by NIR spectroscopy. Crude protein content can be expressed as g per kg dry matter (g kg-1 DM) or as per cent of fresh weight (% FW). Near-infrared reflectance spectra were recorded for 103 fresh grass silage samples. Laboratory analysis of DM and CP were determined for these samples. MLR, PCR and PLS techniques were used for data modelling to determine the optimum models for predicting each of the chemical constituents. It was concluded that the PLS method was superior to the PCR and MLR methods for DM and CP prediction in fresh grass silage samples, while MLR showed a promising possibility to determine the CP content using only two spectral values measured at two “characteristic”wavelengths.