Performance and cost benefits of growing pigs fed diets containing graded levels of cassava plant meal
The study evaluated the nutrient digestibility of three standardised Cassava Plant Meals (CPMs) products developed from Tropical Manihot Species (TMS) 30572 with a focus on its efficiency to replace maize completely in the diets of growing pigs and its effect on their growth. The CPM with the best apparent nutrient digestibility (CPM III) was used in the formulation of the basal diet fed to the pigs in the 56-day feeding trial. Twenty growing crossbred pigs (Large White x Hampshire) with initial average weight of 20.00±0.5 kg and of different sexes were randomly allotted to five experimental diets containing 0, 25, 50, 75 and 100 % of maize replaced with CPM as CPM0, CPM1, CPM2, CPM3 and CPM4 respectively. Results showed that cassava plant meal product III (CPM III) had better apparent nutrient digestibility than products I and II. Significant difference (p<0.05) existed across dietary treatments for average daily weight gain and feed conversion ratio. However, the final weight of pigs on diet CPM2 (50 % replacement) was highest compared to other dietary treatments. Significant differences (p<0.05) also existed for average daily feed intake across the dietary treatments. Feed conversion ratio, feed intake and weight gain values of CPM2 compared favourably with CPM0, while, CPM2 had the least cost of production. It can be concluded that cassava plant meal could completely replace maize in the diets of growing pigs and significantly reduced cost of production.
Keywords: Standardized cassava plant meal; maize; pigs; feed intake; weight gain; cost benefit