Growing broilers on antibiotic and ionophore free diets
A research study was carried out at Southern Poultry Research in the U.S. to show how a highly digestible protein in antibiotic and anticoccidial free diets can affect performance in commercial broiler production. Results of the trial have once again confirmed that addition of HP AviStart in the diet is part of the right approach due to its effects of reducing FCR and improving body weights at the end of the cycle with only a 5% inclusion rate in the starter diet.
The question of how to succeed with antibiotic-free production and what alternatives are available in the market has been the subject of many discussions.For HAMLET PROTEIN the key consideration is the digestibility of feed and elimination of dietary anti-nutritional factors.
The digestive tract is highly immature at hatching, so unless feed is easy to digest, many nutrients will pass through the digestive tract unabsorbed, resulting in poor performance.
The issue with soy protein in its untreated form is its high content of anti-nutritional factors. Though a lesser problem for older broilers, in the immature digestive system of a newly hatched chick anti-nutritional factors have a direct negative impact on protein absorption – and the chick’s potential for healthy growth.
HP AviStart is a source of highly digestible soy protein that is low in anti-nutritional factors produced through an enzymatic co-processing of soy and yeast. The objective of the following trial was to evaluate the performance of chickens fed different levels of HP AviStart in the starter feed of an antibiotic and anticoccidial free feeding program
Facts on the feeding trial
- 2,400 Cobb 500 broilers
- Duration of 35 days, with 16 replicates per treatment (50 birds/pen)
- Broilers were fed three different diets by replacing soybean meal with HP AviStart (Table 1)
- Starter diets were fed in crumble form and the common grower diet was fed in pelleted form
- No antibiotics or anticoccidials were used in the feed. All chicks were spray vaccinated with a commercial coccidia vaccine at the recommended level prior to placement.
Performance related to dosage
Results show improvements in FCR, ADG and end weights with different dosages of HP AviStart replacing soybean meal.
Although 10% resulted in a better FCR, the recommended dosage is 5% as at this concentration it is possible to reach the
highest return on investment.
Up to 36g extra weight and a decrease of four points in FCR
By giving a starter feed with an inclusion of 5% HP AviStart, chickens gained an extra 36g of body weight. A decrease of FCR
by 4 points was also seen. At a dosage between 5 and 10% the return of investment (ROI) was 4-9 times at 35 days.
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Right after hatching, chicks rely on their yolk sac while they learn to scratch for food. When their starter feed contains HP AviStart, they can digest essential nutrients from day 1.