African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development

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Body weight gain, dressing percentage, abdominal fat and serum cholesterol of broilers supplemented with a microbial preparation

ACL Safalaoh


A study was conducted to study the effects of supplementation of a microbial preparation, Effective Micro organisms (EM), on body weight gain, dressing percentage, abdominal fat and serum cholesterol content of broilers. The EM was added to drinking water at a rate of 1 part EM to 1000 parts of water. The two treatments were control (0 EM) and 1 EM. Final body weights, serum cholesterol and abdominal fat pads were determined at day 42. Dressing percentage was determined using carcass weight as a proportion of body weight. Abdominal fat was used as an indicator of the carcass' fat content and was calculated as percentage of body weight. Birds supplemented with 1 EM had significantly (P0 <. 05) higher weight gains (2094 ± 11g) than the control (2057 ± 15 g). Control birds had significantly (P0 <. 05) higher feed intake (3785 ± 9 g) than the birds supplemented with 1 EM (3748 ± 13 g). However, feed efficiency, measured as feed: gain ratio, was better for the EM supplemented birds (1.79 ± 0.03) than the control (1.84 ± 0.02). Although not significantly different, serum cholesterol content was lower for 1 EM birds (3.15 ± 0.21 mmol/l) than in 0 EM birds (3.38 ± 0.17g mmol/l). Dressing percentage was not significantly different between the two treatments, but numerically higher for the 1 EM birds than the control. Abdominal fat pad was lower for the 1 EM treated birds than the non-EM treated birds. The results of this study suggest that microbial preparations such as EM, can be used to improve weight gain, feed utilisation and reduce abdominal fat pads, hence fat content of birds. Although not significant, the present study has shown that use of microbial preparations may have some potential to improve dressing percentage and lower serum cholesterol. However, further studies such as use of different EM concentrations are required to ascertain the results found in this study. To assess potential health benefits, research is also required to assess the effect of using EM on total cholesterol content in tissues.

Keywords: effective microbes, broiler performance, cholesterol

African Journal of Food, Agriculture, Nutrition and Development Vol. 6(1) 2006
AJOL African Journals Online