Palm kernel expellers as an alternative ingredient in growing pig diets
AbstractThis study evaluated the effects of palm kernel expellers in growing diets on growth performance, nutrient digestibility, and carcass and meat quality characteristics of growing-finishing pigs. A total of 88 growing pigs were randomly assigned to two dietary treatment groups. The control diet (CON) was a typical growing or finishing diet based on corn-soybean meal, and the treatment diet (PKE) was formulated by replacing CON with 20% palm kernel expellers. The PKE-CON group was fed the PKE diet during the growing period (six weeks) and the CON diet during the finishing period (12 weeks). The CON-CON group was fed the CON diets during both growing and finishing periods. The PKE-CON group showed significantly depressed growth performance and lower nutrient digestibility than the CON-CON group during the growing period. However, after feeding the typical finisher diets during the finishing period, the PKE-CON group showed no difference in growth performance in comparison with the CON-CON group during both the finishing and overall experimental periods. In addition, carcass and meat quality characteristics were not significantly different between the PKE-CON and the CON-CON groups. The results of this study imply that palm kernel expellers can be an alternative ingredient in the growing diets of growing-finishing pigs if the combined feeding strategy (PKE for the growing period and CON for the finishing period) is used.
Keywords: Feed alternatives, growing pig diet, growth performance, meat quality traits, palm kernel expeller