Effect of feed grade acidifiers on total tract mineral retention, intestinal pH and phytate utilization by broiler finisher chickens
Mineral chelators such as organic acids have been reported to compete favourably with phytate by forming soluble complexes with feed minerals. Effect of feed grade acidifiers on total tract mineral retention and intestinal pH of broiler finisher chickens was investigated. A total of 300-broiler finisher chickens were assigned to four treatment groups. Each treatment was replicated thrice with twenty chickens per replicate in a completely randomized design. The control treatment (T ) was fed the control diet adequate in available phosphorus at 0.5% 1 while other treatments (T -T ) were fed sub-optimal available phosphorus diets at 0.4%. 2 4 Three blends of acidifiers; Fysal®, Orgacid® and Acidomix® were supplemented in the diets of chickens in treatments 2, 3 and 4 at 0.1% (1kg per ton/feed). Chickens fed diet supplemented with Fysal® showed the best (P<0.05) results in total tract mineral retention 56.5+/-5.75 compared to the control and other treatments. The poor mineral retention i.e. 35 and 46% for calcium and phosphorus respectively by chickens fed the control diet was attributed to the insoluble phytate-mineral complex that limits mineral bioavailability. Intestinal segments of chickens fed acidified diets showed significant reduction (P<0.05) in pH in the range of 5.26- 7.16 across duodenum to ileum compared to the control group 6.83-8.76. It is concluded that feed acidification at 0.1% improves mineral utilization in broiler chickens as it competes
favourably with phytate in the lumen of the gut leading to better nutrient utilization.
Keywords: Acidifier, supplementation, phytate, minerals, intestinal pH