Methionine in Velvet Bean (Mucuna pruriens) Based Broiler Starter Diets and Bean Influence on Finishing Broilers
The performance of broiler chicks fed starter diets containing 30% raw or heat treated, and 20% heat treated velvet beans with varying levels of methionine was determined. The influence of varying levels of heat treated velvet beans on growth and carcass characteristics of finishing broilers was also investigated. There was no beneficial effect of adding methionine to broiler starter diets containing 30 % raw or heat •reated velvet beans. Addition of methionine to starter diets containing 20% heat treated velvet beans significantly (P < 0.05) improved weight gain. Optimal performance was achieved with birds consuming the diet containing 0.2 % added methionine. The content of total dietary methionine and sulphur amino acids were 0.66 and 1.0% respectively. When heat treated and added at levels up to 20 % of the diet, velvet beans proved to be a good source of protein for finishing broilers. Addition of 30% heat treated velvet beans to a finisher diet, however, decreased (P < 0.05) weight gain and increased (P < 0.05) carcass yield.
Key words: Velvet beans, methionine, broilers, autoclaving, roasting