The Research Column

by Heinz Meissner

Click on any of the publications below to read more about the specific topic:

  • Discipline: housing; Keywords: thermal protection, durable lying surfaces, behaviour, free-stall lying surface softness, culling.


  • Discipline: starter culture; Keywords: industrial cheese manufacturing, enzymatic coagulation, protein separation, proteolysis.

    Miniature cheeses can open up new possibilities to screen cheese starter cultures and study many other aspects of cheese production in the factory. The study was reported by H. Bachmann and coworkers in the Journal of Dairy Science (2009), Volume 92, pages 5868-5882, using the title: A high-throughput cheese manufacturing model for effective cheese starter culture screening.


  • Discipline: yogurt; Keywords: lactic acid bacteria, stirring, low-speed agitation, process time, acidity profile, microbiological dynamics.

    Is agitation during fermentation beneficial to yogurt characteristics? This question was addressed by E.J. Aguirre-Ezkauriatza and coworkers in a study entitled: Effect of mixing during fermentation in yogurt manufacturing, which was published in the Journal of Dairy Science (2008), Volume 91, pages 4454-4465.


  • Discipline: reproduction; Keywords: reproductive performance, genetic progress, health, glucose manufacturing, hormonal interference, appetite control.

    Sub-fertility in high-producing dairy cows is a known problem in most countries, also in South Africa. The question is do we understand the causes and can farmers limit the consequences? The status of current knowledge and understanding has been reviewed recently by L.M. Chagas and co-authors in a paper published in the Journal of Dairy Science (2007), Volume 90, pages 4022-4032; the title being: New perspectives on the roles of nutrition and metabolic priorities in the sub-fertility of high-producing dairy cows.


  • Discipline: body condition score; Keywords: body reserve status, fat, hormonal changes, pregnancy, metabolic disorders.

    Research in this context was reviewed by J.R.Roche and coworkers in a paper published in the Journal of Dairy Science, Volume 92, pages 5769 to 5801. The title of the paper is: Body condition score and its association with dairy cow productivity, health, and welfare.


  • Discipline: dairy & health; Keywords: inflammatory diseases, CLA, fishy flavors, rumen-inert calcium salts, sensory panel.

    This topic was addressed by K.A.S. Nelson and S. Martini in a paper called: Increasing omega fatty acid in cow's milk through diet manipulation: Effect on milk flavor. The paper was published in the Journal of Dairy Science, Volume 92, pages 1378-1386.


  • Discipline: probiotics; Keywords: fermentation, flavour, human health, starter culture, propionibacteria.

    Researchers F.Y. Ekinci and M. Gurel thought so and tested the concept in their research published in the paper: Effect of using propionic acid bacteria as an adjunct culture in yogurt production. The paper was published in The Journal of Dairy Science, Volume 91, pages 892-899.