Background: Sugarcane silage has been increasing as a feed in the tropics by dairy
farmers. However, sugarcane normally had high yeast population that leads to intense alcoholic
fermentation and excessive Dry-Matter (DM) loss during ensilage and after air exposure, as well.
There are several patents that have recently shown the benefits of applying Lactobacillus buchneri
in forage preservation.
Objective: This study aimed to investigate the changes in pH, DM, Water-Soluble Carbohydrates
(WSC) and fermentation end product concentrations that occur in sugarcane silage with or without
inoculation with L. buchneri after 45 days of ensiling.
Methods: Sugarcane plants were harvested with approximately 16 months of growth and chopped
at 2 cm. Four strains of wild L. buchneri (56.1, 56.4, 56.9 and 56.26) and the commercial inoculant
“Lalsil Cana” were evaluated. For all treatments, the theoretical application rate was 1.0 × 106 colony-
forming units (cfu) per g of fresh weight. Data from the silo openings were analysed as a completely
randomized design, with four replicates per treatment (inoculants).
Results: The treatment with L. buchneri affected the DM content, pH, Lactic Acid Bacteria (LAB)
population, DM recovery, and concentrations of WSC, lactic acid, acetic acid and ethanol of sugarcane
silage after 45 days of ensiling. Yeasts and molds populations and the concentrations of propionic
and butyric acids were not affected by the treatments.
Conclusion: Lactobacillus buchneri 56.1 and 56.4 are considered the most suitable strains for improving
the fermentation of sugarcane silage and thus are potential inoculants for silage production.
At present, we are preparing the patent application.