Does the Inclusion of Lyso-Lecithin (Lecired) Improve the Growth of Newly Weaned Pigs?
In conclusion, the addition of 10% (of dietary fat) lyso-lecithin to high or low energy diets of weanling pigs had only modest effects on the performance of these piglets, regardless of the inclusion of tallow in the diet. Future experiments need to clarify if fat emulsification is limiting fat digestibility in piglets of this age.
The newly weaned piglet is abruptly transferred from a liquid milk diet, containing about 8% fat to a dry diet with approximately 5% fat. Moreover, fat digestibility of milk fat by the suckling pig approaches 95% while the digestion of dietary fat by the piglet shortly after weaning is only about 75% (cited by Price et al. 2013). Thus, supplementing dietary fat to the diet of the newly weaned piglet does not alleviate the deficit in energy intake experienced at this time.
Price et al. (2013) showed that the addition of lecithin to the diet of newly weaned piglets improved digestibility of long-chain fatty acids. However, similar to the results of others, this did not result in an improved growth rate. Lecithin, which is primarily phosphatidylcholine, is commonly added to food, because it is an emulsifier. It is listed in CFIA, Schedule IV. We hypothesized that Lyso-lecithin will improve digestibility of tallow, resulting in a performance response when the pigs are limiting in energy.