Phosphorous in pig diets

by 5m Editor
8 December 2006, at 11:18am

UK - In research conducted by the Agri-Food and Biosciences Institute in Northern Ireland, three different levels of phosphous in pig diets were compared.


National Pig Association

NPA is active on members' behalf in Brussels & Whitehall, and with processors, supermarkets & caterers - fighting for the growth and pros-perity of the UK pig industry.

Phosphorus is an essential nutrient for pigs - vital for bone formation and growth - but it is also a major contributor to the eutrophication of waterways and is therefore viewed with concern by environmentalists.

Three levels of total P were compared: 0.6 percent, 0.5 percent and and 0.45 percent (fresh basis). If all finishing pigs in Northern Ireland were offered diets based on 0.45 percent P rather than 0.6 percent P, loss of P to the environment would be reduced by 86 tonnes a year, says Dr. Elizabeth McCann.

The research has concluded:

  • 0.45 percent total P (fresh basis) is sufficient to supply adequate P for growth and metabolism in finishing pigs.
  • It is not possible to formulate finishing pig diets to levels lower than 0.45 percent total P (fresh basis).
  • 0.6 percent total P (fresh basis) results in an oversupply of P to finishing pigs and increases urinary P loss.
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