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Researchers Strive to Improve Rations for Newly Weaned Piglets

10 April 2015
Manitoba Pork Council

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CANADA - Scientists working on behalf of Swine Innovation Porc are evaluating a range of feeding strategies aimed at improving the performance of baby pigs during weaning, writes Bruce Cochrane.

As part of research being conducted on behalf of Swine Innovation Porc scientists with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, the Prairie Swine Centre and the Universities of Laval, Guelph, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Alberta are collaborating on a project aimed at enhancing the nutritive value of diets fed to newly weaned piglets.

Dr Martin Nyachoti, an animal science professor with the University of Manitoba, explains the intent is to avoid the typical loss of productivity during the transition to solid feed.

Dr Martin Nyachoti-University of Manitoba:

Specifically we are looking at pretreatment methods such as fermentation that will be done out in Saskatchewan.

We'll be working on that this summer and then we'll bring some of those samples here to work at the University of Manitoba.

Also we would like to test these using some of the processes that we have such as subjecting pigs to a specific disease so we can see how they might be able to benefit if we added this type of ingredients into the diets.

So one of the processes that we are evaluating is pre-treatment of those ingredients such as ensiling or fermentation of those ingredients as a way of enhancing their feeding value for baby pigs.

Essentially what we're going to do there is once the feed is fermented we'll feed that to pigs.

The work is being done out at the U of S but we will get the samples here and we will run some disease challenge trials to test the ability of those ingredients to allow piglets to cope with the transition from weaning to nursery pig diets.

Dr Nyachoti says information gathered through this project will be used to formulate diets that will help maintain the performance of baby pigs as they transition to solid feed.

ThePigSite News Desk

Top image via Shutterstock

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