Research Reports

Comparative amino acid digestibility in blood products fed to weanling pigs

The U.S. slaughter industry produces blood co-products that may be used in diets for nursery pigs because of the high concentration and quality of protein they contain. The quality of protein in blood products can differ based on the processing techniques used.  In particular, products which are heated to too high a temperature during processing can sustain heat damage to amino acids due to the Maillard reaction. Lysine is particularly susceptible to heat damage.

An experiment was performed to determine the comparative amino acid digestibility in five different blood products fed to weanling pigs. Three are spray-dried products, which are dried quickly at temperatures of up to 225˚C. Spray-dried animal blood (SDAB) is manufactured from whole blood containing an anticoagulant. Spray-dried plasma protein (SDPP) is manufactured from blood which has had the plasma separated out by centrifugation. Spray-dried blood cells (SDBC) are the red blood cells left after plasma separation. In addition to the spray-dried products, two sources of blood meal were tested – one from an avian source (avian blood meal, or ABM) and one from a porcine source (porcine blood meal, or PBM). These blood meals were dried using drum driers instead of spraydriers.

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Comparative amino acid digestibility in feather meal fed to pigs

Hydrolyzed feather meal is a co-product of the rendering industry that can be used as a protein source in diets fed to pigs. However, the variability in quality and digestibility between different sources of hydrolyzed feather meal has limited its use in swine diets. An experiment was conducted to determine the apparent (AID) and the standardized (SID) ileal digestibility of crude protein and amino acids in four sources of hydrolyzed feather meal. Because blood is sometimes added to feather meal during processing, the experiment also evaluated the effects on crude protein and amino acid digestibility of the addition of blood to feather meal.

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Effects of replacing chicken meal or poultry by-product meal with fermented soybean meal in phase 1, phase 2, and phase 3 diets fed to weanling pigs

Animal proteins such as milk products, blood products, fish meal, chicken meal (CM), and poultry by-product meal (PBM) are usually used as amino acid sources in diets for weanling pigs because the nutrients in these ingredients are highly digestible and because they do not contain the anti-nutritional factors that are present in conventional soybean meal. Due to the cost of animal protein sources, other alternatives have been investigated. One alternative is soybean meal which has been fermented to destroy antinutritional factors and increase protein digestibility. Fermented soybean meal (FSBM) has been shown to be able to replace milk, blood proteins, and fish meal in diets fed to weanling pigs. However, there are no data on whether or not fermented soybean meal can replace chicken meal and poultry by-product meal. An experiment was, therefore, performed to test the hypothesis that fermented soybean meal can replace chicken meal and poultry by-product meal in diets fed to weanling pigs without negatively affecting growth performance.

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Effects of replacing fish meal with fermented soybean meal in phase 1, phase 2, and phase 3 diets fed to weanling pigs

Animal proteins such as milk products, blood products, fish meal, chicken meal, and poultry by-product meal are usually used as amino acid sources in diets for weanling pigs because the nutrients in these ingredients are highly digestible and because they do not contain the anti-nutritional factors that are present  in conventional soybean meal. Due to the cost of animal protein sources, other alternatives have been investigated. One alternative is soybean meal which has been fermented to destroy antinutritional factors and increase protein digestibility. Fermented soybean meal (FSBM) may partly replace milk and blood proteins in diets fed to weanling pigs from seven to 21 days post-weaning. However, there are no data on the inclusion of more than 10% FSBM in diets fed to weanling pigs. Therefore, two experiments were conducted to test the hypothesis that FSBM may be included in diets fed to weanling pigs to replace all animal protein sources.

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Amino acid digestibility in Lemna Protein Concentrate fed to weanling pigs

Lemna Protein Concentrate is derived from the leaves of duckweed, one of several rapidly-growing aquatic plants of the genus Lemna. Duckweed has a number of advantages as a protein source. It is relatively inexpensive to produce and requires less growing area and fewer inputs than other plant protein sources such as soybean products. It also contains relatively little fiber, making it a highly digestible feed ingredient.

An experiment was conducted to determine the digestibility of amino acids and crude protein in Lemna Protein Concentrate fed to weanling pigs and to compare these values to digestibility values obtained for soybean meal and fish meal.

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Up to 30% corn germ may be included in diets fed to growing-finishing pigs without affecting pig growth performance, carcass composition or pork fat quality

Corn germ is a co-product of the wet milling industry that is available for use in swine diets to partially replace the more expensive corn grain. Results of arecent experiment indicated that including 15% corn germ in diets containing 30% DDGS had no negative effects on pig growth performance, carcass composition, or pork fat quality. However, it is not known if greater quantities of corn germ may be included in diets fed to growing-finishing pigs. Therefore, we conducted an experiment to determine if greater levels of corn germ may be included in diets fed to growing-finishing pigs without negatively affecting growth performance, carcass characteristics, muscle and fat quality, or belly quality. The experiment also determined if the presence of DDGS in the diets influences the responses to the inclusion of corn germ.

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Amino acid digestibility in heated soybean meal fed to growing pigs

Soybean meal fed to pigs undergoes heat treatment to destroy trypsin inhibitors and other antinutritional factors that impair the digestion of protein and thus reduce performance. However, heat treatment can damage nutrients as well. In particular, the Maillard reaction reduces amino acid digestibility by combining amino acids with sugars to produce biologically unavailable compounds.

An experiment was conducted to determine the digestibility of amino acids in pigs fed soybean meal that had been heat treated in varying ways and for varying times. Conventional soybean meal was divided into four batches. One batch was not heated; one was autoclaved at 125°C for 15 minutes; one was autoclaved at 125°C for 30 minutes; and the last one was oven dried at 125°C for 30 minutes. Ten growing barrows were fed a total of five different diets. The experimental diets contained 40% each of the four different soybean meals being tested. An N-free diet was also formulated and fed to measure the basal endogenous loss of protein and amino acids.

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Energy concentration and phosphorus digestibility in whey powder, whey permeate, and low-ash whey permeate fed to weanling pigs

Whey powder is a co-product of the cheese industry, and consists primarily of lactose and protein. The inclusion of whey powder in weanling pig diets improve growth performance; this is believed to be due to the lactose fraction. Because of the demand for whey protein from the human food industry, the protein is sometimes extracted from whey powder. The resulting product is called whey permeate.

Few values for digestible and metabolizable energy in whey permeate have been reported. In addition, the standardized total tract digestibility (STTD) of phosphorus in these ingredients has not been reported. Therefore, two experiments were conducted: the first, to determine the concentrations of digestible and metabolizable energy in whey powder, whey permeate, and low-ash whey permeate; and the second, to determine the apparent and standardized total tract digestibility of phosphorus in the same ingredients.

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Digestibility of phosphorus and calcium in meat and bone meal fed to growing pigs

Meat and bone meal (MBM) is a product of the rendering industry composed primarily of the offal and bones of slaughtered livestock, fat from unmarketable animal tissues, unsellable retail meat products, and whole condemned carcasses (excluding hair, blood, hooves, horns, and contents of the gastrointestinal tract).  MBM is traditionally used as an animal protein source in swine diets, but because of its high concentrations of calcium and phosphorus, it can also replace inorganic phosphates in swine diets.

The proportions of soft tissue and bone in different sources of MBM can vary widely. Because mineral digestibility differs in bone and soft tissue, the variation in composition of MBM sources leads to a variation in mineral digestibility values.

An experiment was conducted to 1) determine the apparent (ATTD) and standardized (STTD) total tract digestibility of phosphorus and the ATTD of calcium in 8 different sources of MBM,  2) estimate variation among MBM sources, and 3) develop equations to predict the concentrations of digestible phosphorus and calcium in MBM.

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Apparent and standardized digestibility of phosphorus in Dried Fermentation Biomass, Peptone 50, PEP2+, and fish meal by weanling pigs

Dried Fermentation Biomass (Ajinomoto Heartland LLC, Chicago, IL) is a co-product of the commercial production of lysine. Peptone 50 and PEP2+ (TechMix LLC, Stewart MN) are co-products of heparin production for the human pharmaceutical industry. The latter two products are produced from hydrolyzed pig intestines that are co-dried with a vegetable protein (Peptone 50) or enzymatically processed vegetable proteins (PEP2+). These co-products are possible replacements for fish meal in weanling pig diets.

An experiment was conducted to measure the apparent total tract digestibility (ATTD) and standardized total tract digestibility (STTD)  of phosphorus in Dried Fermentation Biomass, Peptone 50, PEP2+, and fish meal fed to weanling pigs.

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Concentration of energy and digestibility of energy and nutrients in fermented soybean meal fed to weanling pigs

Soybean meal is a rich source of digestible amino acids for pigs. However, soybeans contain antinutritional factors such as antigenic proteins, oligosaccharides, lectins, and trypsin inhibitors that make soybeans and conventional soybean meal unsuitable for feeding to weanling pigs in great quantities. Therefore, animal protein is usually included in starter diets for pigs. Because soy protein is less expensive than the animal protein, strategies to reduce the antinutritional factors in soy products have been explored. Fermentation of soybean meal with bacteria such as Aspergillus oryzae and Lactobacillus subtilis eliminates many antinutritional factors, and studies have shown that fermented soybean meal is well-tolerated by weanling pigs. However, there is a lack of data on the digestibility of energy and amino acids in fermented soybean meal. Two experiments were, therefore, conducted to measure the concentration of DE and ME and the digestibility of amino acids in fermented soybean meal and to compare these values to values obtained in conventional soybean meal and fish meal.

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Digestibility of energy in Dried Fermentation Biomass, Peptone 50, PEP2+, and fish meal fed to weanling pigs

Dried Fermentation Biomass (Ajinomoto Heartland LLC) is a co-product of the commercial production of lysine. Peptone 50 and PEP2+ (TechMix LLC) are co-products of heparin production for the human pharmaceutical industry. The latter two products are produced from hydrolyzed pig intestines that are co-dried with a vegetable protein (Peptone 50) or enzymatically processed vegetable proteins (PEP2+). These co-products are possible replacements for fish meal in weanling pig diets.

An experiment was conducted to measure the digestibility of energy and the concentration of digestible (DE) and metabolizable energy (ME) in Dried Fermentation Biomass, Peptone 50, PEP2+, and fish meal fed to weanling pigs.

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Amino acid digestibility in Dried Fermentation Biomass, Peptone 50, and PEP2+ fed to weanling pigs

Dried Fermentation Biomass (Ajinomoto Heartland LLC) is a co-product of the commercial production of lysine. Peptone 50 and PEP2+ (TechMix LLC) are co-products of heparin production by the human pharmaceutical industry. The latter two are produced from hydrolyzed pig intestines co-dried with a vegetable protein (Peptone 50) or enzymatically processed vegetable proteins (PEP2+). These co-products are being investigated as possible cost-effective replacements for fish meal in weanling pig diets.

An experiment was performed to measure the apparent and standardized ileal digestibility of CP and amino acids by weanling pigs in Dried Fermentation Biomass, Peptone 50, and PEP2+, respectively, and to compare these values to digestibility values obtained in fish meal.

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Negative effects of distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS) on fat quality of pigs are not ameliorated by addition of corn germ, tallow, palm kernel oil, or glycerol to finishing diets

Distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS) can be fed in swine diets at an inclusion rate of up to 30% without negatively affecting pig growth performance. However, DDGS contains high levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA), which may promote deposition of unsaturated dietary fatty acids in adipose tissue. Consequently, inclusion of DDGS at more than 20% has been shown to result in increased fat iodine values (IV) and soft belly production.  The disadvantages of this decrease in fat quality include reduced shelf life, increased susceptibility to oxidative damage, and reduced belly sliceability.

An experiment was performed to determine if the addition of different sources of saturated fat would improve belly fat quality in pigs fed a DDGS-based diet. In addition, the hypothesis that the iodine value product (IVP) of the diet can be used to predict backfat IV and belly fat IV of pigs fed diets containing DDGS was tested.

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Effects of graded levels of microbial phytase on the standardized total tract digestibility of phosphorus in corn and corn co-products

Corn contains approximately 0.26% phosphorus, but most of this phosphorus is bound to phytic acid, or phytate, and thus is not bioavailable to pigs because they lack the enzyme phytase. Corn-based diets can be supplemented with inorganic phosphorus to help meet pigs' phosphorus needs; however, rising costs of inorganic phosphorus makes this approach increasingly uneconomical. Helping pigs digest more of the phosphorus that naturally occurs in the diet could provide a cost-effective alternative to inorganic phosphorus supplementation while also helping to reduce the environmental burden of excreted phosphorus. An experiment was conducted to determine how adding graded levels of microbial phytase affected the standardized total tract digestibility (STTD) of phosphorus in corn and corn co-products. From these data, regression equations were developed to predict the response to adding different levels of phytase to each ingredient.

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Amino acid digestibility and concentration of digestible and metabolizable energy in a threonine co-product fed to weanling pigs

Because weanling pigs cannot properly digest soybean meal, animal proteins such as fish meal and spray-dried plasma protein are often used in starter diets. However, the cost of these ingredients has become prohibitive for many swine producers, and new sources of digestible protein for weanling pigs are being sought.

Researchers at the Stein Monogastric Nutrition Lab have been studying a co-product of the production of synthetic L-Threonine, which is used as a supplement in low-protein diets. Synthetic L-Threonine is produced by fermenting a carbohydrate substrate using  bacteria such as E. coli. Threonine is extracted from the fermentation broth. The leftover biomass and substrate have the potential to be used as a feed source, but little is known about its nutritional value. Two experiments were conducted to measure amino acid digestibility and energy concentration in a threonine co-product that is produced by drying this left-over biomass.

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Amino acid digestibility and energy concentration of copra expellers, palm kernel expellers, and palm kernel meal fed to growing pigs

Copra and palm kernel co-products are commonly fed to ruminant animals in some parts of the world. However, very limited research has been reported on the use of these ingredients in swine diets. No values are listed in the NRC (1998) for copra expellers, palm kernel expellers, or palm kernel meal.

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Digestibility of phosphorus by weanling pigs of fermented and conventional soybean meal without and with exogenous phytase

The majority of phosphorus in conventional soybean meal is bound in the phytate complex. Pigs do not secrete the phytase enzyme, so phytate-bound phosphorus is not digested and is excreted in the feces. Not only does this deprive pigs of an essential nutrient, but excessive phosphorus excretion can contribute to environmental problems as well.

Addition of microbial phytase is one strategy for increasing the digestibility of phosphorus in soybean meal. Another potentially effective strategy is to feed fermented soybean meal.  Fermentation may result in hydrolysis of phytate and release of phytate-bound phosphorus, thus making more phosphorus available to the pig.

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Digestibility of amino acids in corn, corn co-products, and bakery meal fed to growing pigs

Rising costs of traditional swine feeds are causing many producers to look for alternative feedstuffs to deliver nutritional value at a lower cost. The corn milling and fermentation industries, and the human food industry, create co-products which can be fed to livestock.  One of these, distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS), has been found to be suitable for inclusion in swine diets up to 30%. Other co-products have not been as extensively studied. This experiment was performed to measure the apparent (AID) and standardized (SID) ileal digestibility of crude protein and amino acids in corn gluten meal, corn gluten feed, corn germ meal, hominy feed, and bakery meal in growing pigs and to compare these values to the values observed for DDGS and corn.

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Amino acid digestibility in canola-, cotton- and sunflower-products fed to finishing pigs

Soybean meal is a high quality source of protein for swine diets. Due to the growth in global production of pigs and poultry, demand for soybeans is increasing rapidly, outpacing production. Therefore, other sources of plant protein are being sought to lower feed costs.

The most abundant oilseeds produced in the world, aside from soybeans, are cottonseed, canola seed (rapeseed), and sunflower seed. These may be fed as de-oiled meals, or the full fat seeds can be fed to increase the energy concentration of the diet.

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