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Keywords

Growth, medium chain fatty acids, nursery pigs

Abstract

A total of 350 pigs (DNA 400 × 200, initial BW = 13.8 lb) were used in a 34-d growth trial to evaluate the effects of increasing a medium chain fatty acid (MCFA)-based feed additive in nursery pig diets. Following arrival to the nursery research facility, pigs were randomized to pens (5 pigs per pen) and allowed a 4-d acclimation period. Thereafter, pens of pigs were blocked by body weight (BW) and randomized to 1 of 5 dietary treatments (14 pens per treatment). Treatments were constructed such that a dose response was created including 0, 0.5, 1.0, and 2.0% MCFA-based additive (CaptiSURE, Kemin Industries, Inc., Des Moines, IA) as well as a treatment including a 1.0% MCFA blend of C6, C8, and C10 (1:1:1 ratio; Sigma Aldrich, St. Louis, MO). Treatment diets were formulated and manufactured in two dietary phases (d 0 to 13 and 13 to 34). Overall (d 0 to 34), increasing CaptiSURE increased (linear, P ≤ 0.014) average daily gain (ADG) and average daily feed intake (ADFI). Feed efficiency improved (quadratic, P = 0.002) with increasing CaptiSURE up to 1% of the diet with no benefit thereafter. As a result of these linear improvements in ADG, pigs fed 2.0% CaptiSURE were 4 lb heavier (P = 0.05) than pigs consuming diets without MCFA at d 34. There was no evidence for differences between the pigs fed 1.0% CaptiSURE and the 1.0% MCFA blend of C6, C8, and C10 in phase 1, phase 2, or in overall performance.

In summary, the addition of this MCFA-based additive in nursery pig diets resulted in a linear improvement in ADG and ADFI. Based on these results, this MCFA feed additive appears to result in a similar improvement in growth performance as the C6, C8, and C10 MCFA blend when both are added at 1% of the diet. Additional research is warranted under commercial conditions to determine if similar advantages in growth performance are observed and if they provide an economic return.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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