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Cut grass smell is "key to healthier dairy products"

Welsh scientists make discovery. Credit: David Ebener

Scientists at the Institute of Biological, Environmental and Rural Sciences (IBERS) at Aberystwyth University say they have discovered that the chemicals that give cut grass its distinctive ‘green odour’ kill off bacteria that convert healthy omega-3 fats into saturated fats in a cow’s gut.

The discovery has been reported in the Society for Applied Microbiology’s Journal of Applied Microbiology.

Dr Sharon Huws, Coleg Cymraeg lecturer in Animal Science at IBERS led the research:

“We’ve known for a while that milk contains a greater proportion of the healthy omega-3 fats in the summer, than in the winter, and now we know it’s probably down to the antimicrobial effects of the green odour products from grass."