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Main research question/goal
How effective are newly developed feed additives for piglets in actual practice? How do they score in terms of growth, feed conversion ratio and feed intake? The feed industry develops many feed additives for piglets. They may have significant added value (improved management, better growth, increased survival), provided that they work. The animal sciences unit has the expertise, staff and accommodation to independently perform accurate feeding trials with these products in piglets and growing-finishing pigs.

Research approach
Researchers at ILVO formulate the feeds and produce them in their experimental feedmill. This ensures the control and precision that is required for this type of experiments. We administer the experimental feed to groups of piglets between 4 and 6 weeks and between 6 and 9 weeks of age, comparing them with control groups of the same age who receive standard piglet feed. We measure performance parameters (growth, feed intake, feed conversion) and, if appropriate, we provide diarrhea scores and analyze samples for the determination of physiological parameters.

The feed cost is a major factor in pig production. An improvement of performances, by using feed additives, can increase the profits. These experiments are also important for product development in supply industry and for the registration of additives. Knowledge about the efficacy of new feed additives or ingredients is important for the sustainability of pig farming.
Effective start/end date1/01/11 → …

ID: 4159927