The use of organic acids (OA) has shown improved digestibility and mineral absorption thus beneficial effect in feed efficiency in pigs, moreover, organic acids have been broadly applied worldwide among a variety of candidates for the replacement of antibiotics, with reasonable success. The objective of the present study was to evaluate the effect of dietary inclusion of protected organic acids (POA) on growth performance and fecal microbiota in weanling pigs compared with unprotected organic acids (UOA) supplementation. For this purpose, a total of 112 weanling pigs with an average BW of 6.70 ± 1.31 kg were used in a 6-week feeding trial and allotted to one of four dietary treatments: 1) a basal diet not supplemented (CON); 2) the control diet supplemented with 0.2% UOA (UOA); 3) the control diet supplemented with 0.1% POA (POA1); and 4) the control diet supplemented with 0.2% POA (POA2). Average daily gain (ADG), average daily feed intake (ADFI) and feed to gain ratio (F:G) were calculated from daily feed intake recordings. For microbial analysis, fecal samples were collected directly from the rectum of 2 pigs randomly selected from each pen (1 female and 1 male) at week 6. Fecal samples were pooled and placed on ice for transportation to the laboratory where microbial analysis was immediately carried out.
Pigs fed POA2 diet showed greater ADG, F:G and nutrient digestibility of dry matter and nitrogen than other dietary treatments without any effects on ADFI and energy digestibility. Increased beneficial microbiota such as Lactobacillus and decreased E. coli and Salmonella counts were observed in weanling pigs fed with the POA diets.
Dietary inclusion of POA showed potential to improve growth performance, while balancing microbial counts in weanling pigs without any adverse effects on pig’s health.
Lee, D. J., Y. Yang, H. I. Jung, D. H. Nguyen, and I. H. Kim. 2018. Effect of Dietary Protected Organic Acids on Growth Performance, Fecal Microflora in Weanling Pigs. Journal of Animal Science 96: 43-43. https://doi.org/10.1093/jas/sky073.081