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Crop Science Abstract -

Quantification of Hydrocyanic Acid in Green Forage1


This article in CS

  1. Vol. 10 No. 5, p. 578-581
    Received: Mar 16, 1970

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  1. J. C. Burns,
  2. L. H. Smith,
  3. W. J. Moline,
  4. W. F. Wedin,
  5. C. H. Noller and
  6. C. L. Rhykerd2



A procedure is presented for the quantification of potential hydrocyanic acid (HCN) released from green tissue. This procedure is suggested in preference to qualitative procedures because resulting data can be compared among both laboratories and regions. In addition, results from qualitative procedures frequently appear incorrectly on a quantitative basis.

The procedure was evaluated for its precision and recovery. An experiment was conducted to examine method (s) of sample preservation and period (s) of sample holding and incubation prior to analysis.

Forage sealed in a polyethylene bag and immediately frozen analyzed similarly in HCN to samples stored in the dark at 26 C. Once preserved, samples were held for 6 hr prior to analysis without significant reduction in HCN levels; however, a slight reduction was noted after 3 hr.

Maximum release of HCN was obtained after samples had been incubated in ethanol for 24 hr with no significant change through 96 hr.

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