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Prairie Swine Centre is grateful for the assistance of the George Morris Centre in developing the economics portion of Pork Insight.

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Tallow and Energy for Grow-Finish Pigs -Monograph

Posted in: Meat Quality, Nutrition, Pork Insight Articles, Prairie Swine Centre, Uncategorized by PSCI on July 5, 2017


This experiment was conducted as a follow-up to a previous experiment conducted at the Prairie Swine Centre, which showed that pigs are able to achieve equivalent performance across diets of quite differing energy concentration. These results flew in the face of conventional wisdom, which suggests that increasing dietary energy concentration, notably through the additional of fat, will result in faster growth. This experiment was therefore conducted to re-evaluate this question, and determine if increasing dietary energy concentration would improve pig performance. The experiment was also designed to evaluate the impact of dietary energy concentration on carcass quality and on the uniformity of growth.

The results of this experiment, conducted on a commercial piggery, confirmed that higher energy diets
can be successfully fed without an adverse effect of carcass quality. Despite the fact that the DE content
of the diet increased by 10%, there was no impact on backfat thickness, lean yield or carcass index.
Indeed, the higher energy diet tended to increase loin thickness. Based on performance, carcass quality and financial return, the lower energy feeding program was once again equal to, or superior to, the higher energy programs. In this experiment, the same energy level was fed throughout; it would appear from the data that the most effective feeding program would be one that employs higher energy levels in the growing and early finishing phases, perhaps up to 80 kg, with lower energy levels used thereafter. This would take advantage of the improved growth on the higher energy diets observed during the first 6 weeks in this experiment, and save money by lowering energy during the final phase of growout, when energy did not elicit a growth response. Since 56% of the feed consumed by pigs on this experiment occurred beyond 80 kg bodyweight, substantial savings could accrue from feeding the lower energy diets after 80 kg.

 
 
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