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Protein requirement for piglets and weaners (OK-Net EcoFeed Practice Abstract)

{Tool} Protein requirement for piglets and weaners (OK-Net EcoFeed Practice Abstract). Creator(s): Åkerfeldt, Magdalena. Issuing Organisation(s): SLU - Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences. OK-Net Ecofeed Practice Abstract, no. 018. (2020)

[thumbnail of Protein requirement for piglets and weaners] PDF - English (Protein requirement for piglets and weaners)

Document available online at: https://orgprints.org/38395/


The acceptance of a reduced level of amino acids in the diet can enable higher use of locally produced protein feed resources and simplify feed manufacturing, feed handling and diet formulation at the farm level. Formu-lating diets with optimal protein content and amino acid composition, in relation to piglet needs, will improve health and growth performance and decrease the risk for excessive protein in the diets and excretion of nitro-gen to the environment. Using a higher percentage of local feed resources increases self-sufficiency and sus-tainability of the farm.
Practical recommendation
• Current recommended levels are based on the maximum production that can be achieved under varying conventional conditions regarding sex, health, environment and breed.
• Use the recommended levels more as guidelines and not as absolute requirements for achieving a certain performance under organic conditions, as the pigs' response can further vary with sex, health, environment and genotype.
• Focus on a gut-friendly diet (adjusted to the piglet's gastrointestinal conditions and nutritional requirements) in order to strengthen the pigs' micro flora and intestinal health.
• A less energy-dense diet with reduced amino acid content, fed ad libitum, can increase the daily feed intake by the pigs, and thereby assure a sufficient total daily intake of amino acids.
• Always apply careful monitoring of the production and health status of the herd.
• Own replacement of gilts could be one way to get animals with a lower requirement of amino acids.
• Contact an agricultural adviser for diet formulation or when implementing new feed formulation tools and investing in new technical equipment.
• Analyse the contents of protein and amino acids for the main feed ingredients produced on the farm and those bought on the market in order to make correct diet formulations.

EPrint Type:Practice tool
What problem does the tool address?:According to the National Research Council (USA) recommended levels of protein and amino acids for pigs are based on data obtained in experiments performed under different conditions, e.g. genetic lines, dietary raw materials, health status and management practices (NRC, 2012). In organic farming, protein and amino acid bal-ance is difficult to achieve, especially in the context of a 100 % organic diet. Reports based on practical experi-ences highlight that the amino acid requirements of modern pig breeds reared under organic conditions might be lower than the recommended levels, particularly with more balanced growth rates. Thus, e.g., the recom-mended intake of digestible lysine by organically reared pigs could be lowered.
For piglets, the most physiologically critical phase is the time after weaning when their protein requirement is high, but at the same time, they are sensitive to gastrointestinal disorders. Organic farmers have to rely on or-ganic, and locally grown feedstuffs in combination with organic protein concentrates to provide a good balance of amino acids in the diet.
What solution does the tool offer?:Adjusting amino acid requirements to below the current recommended levels can help organic producers to meet the nutritional needs for piglets and weaners, in the context of a 100 % organic diet. The diets should be formulated according to the specific production potential and farmer objectives (breed, weaning age, actual health status, aimed growth rate and feed conversion). Examples of different dietary amino acid requirements according to various reccommendations are shown in Table 1.
Type of Practice Tool:Practice abstracts
Keywords:swine, animal husbandry, feeding, rations
Agrovoc keywords:
animal husbandry
Subjects: Animal husbandry > Feeding and growth
Animal husbandry > Production systems > Pigs
Research affiliation: European Union > Horizon 2020 > OK-Net EcoFeed
European Union > Horizon 2020 > OK-Net EcoFeed > OK-Net Ecofeed Tools
Sweden > Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU)
H2020 or FP7 Grant Agreement Number:773911
Related Links:https://organic-farmknowledge.org/tool/38395
Project ID:oknet
Deposited By: Forschungsinstitut für biologischen Landbau, FiBL
ID Code:38395
Deposited On:25 Sep 2020 15:14
Last Modified:12 Nov 2020 11:28
Document Language:English

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