Fermented or Acidified Grains Added to Swine Diets Offers Health Benefits

Farmscape for May 24, 2018

Research conducted on behalf of Swine Innovation Porc shows including fermented or acidified grains in swine diets offers several health benefits.
In partnership with Swine Innovation Porc, scientists with the University of Saskatchewan are evaluating the effectiveness of feed processing to improve the value of low quality feed ingredients.
Dr. Denise Beaulieu, an Assistant Professor Monogastric Nutrition with the University of Saskatchewan, says pork producers are always looking for ways to improve their bottom lines and one option is to use low quality ingredients not suitable for human consumption to produce high quality protein that humans can eat.

Clip-Dr. Denise Beaulieu-University of Saskatchewan:
We were looking specifically at fermentation.
Fermentation is adding bacteria, in this case a couple of different strains of lactobacilli and so those bacteria produce enzymes and the enzymes break down the feed into organic acids.
That allows the feed to be preserved.
We were also looking at directly adding acids to the feed.
Here again, lowering the pH, decrease the bacteria growth and could this then be used to preserve the grain and then the pig also gets some benefit from that reduced pH.
One of the first physiological effects is when we feed an acidified diet we help maintain the low acidity in the gut which is very important to a piglet, especially a very young piglet.
They don't seem to have the same amount of acid produced during digestion so that low acidity helps with digestion.
It activates enzymes required for digestion so it's very very important.
There's some benefits just from the addition of the organic acids themselves.
Some of these organic acids have benefits to the pig regardless of the low pH.
It helps for development of the gut wall for example.

Dr. Beaulieu acknowledges acids are not all the same, some having a different strength and different feeds have different buffering capacities.
She says it's felt we should be looking at keeping the pH consistently below five to stop the growth of bacteria.
For Farmscape.Ca, I'm Bruce Cochrane.

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