Comparative Feed Values for Swine


Factsheet - ISSN 1198-712X   -   Copyright Queen's Printer for Ontario
Agdex#: 400/68
Publication Date: 01/03
Order#: 03-003
Last Reviewed: Febuary 2012
History: Replaces OMAFRA Factsheet Feeding Livestock with Organic Wastes - Comparative Feed Values for Swine, Order No. 97-035
Written by: Greg Simpson - Swine Nutritionist/OMAFRA

 

Table of Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Cost
  3. Relative Value
  4. Protein Quality
  5. Nutrient Availability (Digestibility)
  6. Anti-Nutritional Factor
  7. Palatability
  8. Inclusion Rate
  9. Nutrient Variability
  10. Stability
  11. Relevant OMAF Factsheets
  12. Nutrient Composition and Suggested Maximum Inclusion
  13. Factors Affecting Inclusion Rate of Alternative Feed Ingredients for Swine

Introduction

Feed costs represent 65%-75% of the variable costs of swine production. As a result, feed costs play a major role in determining the profitability of a swine enterprise. While corn and soybean meal are the industry standards for supplying energy and protein, there are many suitable alternatives that meet nutritional requirements while reducing the cost of the ration.

Price relationships vary greatly depending on seasonal variability, global and local markets. Pork producers must be able to evaluate the cost effectiveness and nutritional value of various feed ingredients in order to supply a nutritionally-balanced diet at a minimal cost.

Least-cost computer ration formulation programs are available to design rations that meet minimal nutritional requirements for the least cost. Feed manufacturers and large farmers use these programs effectively to purchase and maintain large inventories of numerous ingredients. Many producers do not have the storage or processing facilities to include a large number of ingredients in the ration. However, producers must still be aware of feeding alternatives and possible ingredient substitutions that may increase returns.

Energy and protein are the main nutrient components in a swine ration. Grains such as corn, barley, wheat and oats have traditionally supplied energy, while protein has come from meals produced from oilseeds such as soybean.

Many alternative feeds useful in swine rations are produced by the industries involved in grain milling, baking, brewing, distilling, packing and rendering, fruit and vegetable, vegetable oil, milk, egg and poultry processing. By-products from these industries are regularly used in manufactured feed to provide required nutrients at a reduced cost. Many of the by-products from these processes are approved as single ingredient feeds in the federal Feeds Act and Regulations and can readily substitute for a portion of the energy or protein supply in a complete feed.

To use ingredients outside those listed in Schedule 4 of the federal Feeds Act and Regulations producers must be licensed under the federal Health of Animals Act and Regulations. Producers obtain licences according to guidelines outlined in sections 111 to 113 of the Health of Animals Act, which governs the use of edible residual material in feeding swine and poultry.

Alternative feeds can be used to provide a portion of the energy or protein in swine rations. The appropriate amount to use will depend on the cost, nutrient availability (digestibility), quality of protein, amino acid profile, palatability, presence of anti-nutritional factors, storage life, and age of the pig for which the feed is intended.

Cost

Cost is one of the most difficult factors to determine when considering the use of alternative feeds. A producer must take into account the amount of nutrients supplied by the replacement feed. This can be extremely difficult since most feeds cannot be directly compared due to nutrient variability. As a result, relative values are often used for comparison purposes. However, note that the ultimate cost of any ration change must also consider other factors such as transportation, special processing needs and storage.

Relative Value

The relative value of a feed ingredient is used to compare the value of that feed to the price of the industry standard energy and protein suppliers delivered to the farm. Table 1, Nutrient Composition and Suggested Maximum Inclusion Rates of Alternative Feed Ingredients for Swine, lists relative values of feeds when compared to corn or soybean meal. They reflect the value of the ingredient as it relates to the 3 most expensive nutrients in a swine ration - energy, lysine and phosphorus. Note that these relative values do not consider the suggested limits on inclusion rates that are listed. The values are based purely on a comparison between the nutrient levels in the alternative feed and the nutrient standards - corn, soybean meal and dicalcium phosphate - and their respective costs.

Protein Quality

Protein quality refers to the amino acid content of the feed ingredient. Since lysine is the most limiting essential amino acid in corn-soybean meal based rations, it is important to consider lysine when valuing replacement feeds. For example, corn gluten and wheat contain a high level of protein relative to the amount of lysine. If a ration was prepared with these ingredients based solely on the protein concentration, the pigs would not be provided with sufficient lysine to support optimum performance. As a result, rations for swine should be balanced according to the level of lysine instead of crude protein.

Nutrient Availability (Digestibility)

Nutrient availability, or digestibility, is the extent to which a nutrient can be used by a pig. A feed such as alfalfa meal may be relatively high in protein but this protein is not available to the pig due to the high fibre content of the feed.

Anti-Nutritional Factor

An anti-nutritional factor is any factor in a feed ingredient that interferes with nutrient digestibility. These may include trypsin inhibitors, tannins, lectins or glucosinolates. For example, raw whole soybeans contain a trypsin inhibitor. As a result, they must be heat-processed or they will cause a decrease in performance due to decreased protein digestibility and absorption.

Palatability

Palatability is the term used to describe the extent to which a pig likes to eat a feed ingredient or ration. As pigs grow older, flavour preferences change, just as they do in humans. Pigs, in fact, have more taste buds than humans (15,000 vs 9,000) so flavours, or off-flavours, can have an impact on what feed alternatives are feasible. In pig rations, for example, dried whole milk is very palatable while triticale has poor palatability at high inclusion levels.

Inclusion Rate

Inclusion rate will vary for ingredients depending on palatability, nutrient availability, protein quality, nutrient interrelationship, and the method of processing and feeding. The maximum inclusion rates in Table 1 vary for each class of pig and are based on limiting factors. If the ingredient is fed above the maximum suggested inclusion rate, animal performance and pork quality can be compromised. Table 2, Factors Affecting Inclusion Rate of Alternative Feed Ingredients for Swine, lists specific feed ingredients and the corresponding factors that will limit their inclusion in a swine ration.

Nutrient Variability

Nutrient variability refers to the variation in nutrient content of different samples of a given ingredient. Many alternative feeds, such as bakery waste, are extremely variable in their nutrient content. This variability makes these feeds more difficult to use and ensure that the ration is properly balanced. Testing of repeated samples can be useful in assessing nutrient variability in a given feed ingredient. Refer to OMAF Factsheet Nutrient Testing, Order No. 03-007 for more information on sampling and testing procedures.

Stability

Stability is the extent to which a nutrient or feed ingredient will remain intact in its original form. For example, vegetable oils that are not stabilized with an antioxidant will go rancid quickly. Rancid oils are very unpalatable and compromise feed intake.

Relevant OMAFRA Factsheets

Comparative Feed Values for Ruminants, Order No. 03-005
Livestock Feed Terms Defined, Order No. 92-017
Nutrient Testing, Order No. 03-007

Table 1. Nutrient Composition and Suggested Maximum Inclusion

Feed Ingredient Dry Matter
(%)
Dry Matter Basis Suggested Maximum** Inclusion Rate
(% of Total Diet)
Relative Value(Compared to...)
DE
kcal/kg
Protein
(%)
Lysine
%
Grower/ Finisher Nursing/
Dry Sows
Energy Feeds             Corn
Alfalfa Meal
92
1989
18.5
0.80
5
NR/60
80-90
Bakery Waste, dried
91
4330
11.9
0.30
40
10
100-110
Barley
89
3427
12.7
0.46
80
80
95-100
Beet Pulp, dried
91
3148
9.5
0.57
10
10
90-100
Brewer's Grains, dried
92
2283
28.8
1.17
10
10
110-120
Chocolate
97
5025
4.9
0.07
30
?
85-95
Corn
89
3961
9.3
0.29
77
77
100
Corn, high moisture
72
3961
9.3
0.29
78
78
80-90
Corn Distillers, dried grains with solubles
93
3441
29.8
0.67
20
40
120-125
Corn Distillers, dried solubles
92
3614
29.0
0.89
20
?
135-145
Corn Gluten Feed
90
3322
23.9
0.70
25
5/90
110-130
Corn Gluten Meal
90
4694
66.9
1.13
5
5
150-160
Corn Hominy
90
3728
11.4
0.42
77
77
100-110
Fat, beef tallow
100
8000
0.0
0.00
3
3
175-200
Fat, soybean oil
100
8750
0.0
0.00
2
3
190-210
Flax
90
3400
37.3
1.38
5
5
150-155
Oats
89
3112
12.9
0.45
20
20
85-95
Oats, hulless
86
4047
19.9
0.55
95
95
110-115
Potato Chips
90
5833
7.2
0.34
25/10
25
125-150
Rye
88
3716
13.4
0.43
40/77
NR/25
100-105
Sucrose
99
3833
0.0
0.00
33
?
85-95
Triticale
90
3689
13.9
0.43
77
25
95-105
Wheat, hard red spring
88
3864
16.0
0.43
57
57
100-110
Wheat, soft white winter
89
3820
13.3
0.37
57
57
100-105
Wheat Bran
89
2719
17.6
0.72
5
15
110-120
Wheat Middlings
89
3455
17.9
0.64
60
60
110-130
Wheat Shorts
88
3392
18.2
0.80
25
25
120-125
Whey, dried
96
3474
12.6
0.94
10
10
130-140
Whey, liquid
7
3571
12.9
1.17
30
?
140-150
Protein Feeds             Soybean Meal
Beans, cull white
84
3600
26.4
1.45
12
12
55-65
Brewer's Grains, dried
92
2283
28.8
1.17
10
10
40-50
Canola Meal
90
3206
39.6
2.31
12
12
75-85
Corn Distillers, dried grains with solubles
93
3441
29.8
0.67
20
40
45-55
Corn Distillers, dried solubles
92
3614
29.0
0.89
20
?
55-60
Corn Gluten Feed
90
3322
23.9
0.70
25
5/90
45-55
Corn Gluten Meal
90
4694
66.9
1.13
5
5
55-70
Fababeans
87
3730
29.2
1.86
20
10
65-75
Fish Meal, menhaden
92
4098
67.7
5.23
5
5
160-170
Flax
90
3400
37.3
1.38
5
5
60-65
Lupins, sweet white
89
3876
39.2
1.73
20
20
70-80
Meat Meal
94
2867
57.4
3.27
5
5
120-130
Milk, skim (dried)
96
4146
36.0
2.98
10
10
100-110
Milk, whole (dried)
88
5667
27.5
2.50
10
10
100-105
Peas
89
3860
25.6
1.69
20/35
15
65-75
Soybean Meal, 44%
89
3921
49.2
3.18
25
25
100
Soybean Meal, 48%
90
4094
52.8
3.36
25
25
100-105
Soybeans, roasted
90
4600
39.1
2.47
10
25
90-100

NR = not recommended
? = not enough information for a recommendation to be made
** = Rates up to and including the maximum can be used

 

Table 2. Factors Affecting Inclusion Rate of Alternative Feed Ingredients for Swine

 

Feed Ingredient

Factors Affecting Inclusion Rate

Alfalfa Meal

High fibre content; low energy; good source of carotene and B vitamins; low digestibility; unpalatable to baby pigs

Bakery Waste, dried

Variable in nutrient content depending on the proportion of bread, cakes, dough, tarts or pies; high in energy; similar to corn in protein and lysine content; salt content can be high

Barley

Higher fibre and lower digestibility than corn

Beans, cull white

Anti-nutritional factors - must be heat treated; low palatability

Beet Pulp, dried

High fibre content; low digestibility; acts as a laxative

Brewer's Grains, dried

High fibre content; low energy; low lysine; source of B vitamins

Canola Meal

Higher fibre than soybean meal; less palatable to younger pigs; anti-nutritional factors

Chocolate

Variable nutrient content depending on product; high energy; low protein

Corn

High energy; low lysine; high digestibility; palatable

Corn, high moisture

Higher moisture content (28% Vs 15% for dry); low lysine; diet should be balanced on a dry matter basis

Corn Distillers, dried grains with solubles

High fibre; high fat; low lysine; bulky; source of B vitamins

Corn Distillers, dried solubles

Excellent source of B vitamins; better balance of amino acids than other distillers products; most desirable of the distillers products for swine

Corn Gluten Feed

Low lysine; high fibre; low energy; variable nutrient content; unpalatable; bulky

Corn Gluten Meal

Low lysine; low fibre content; variable nutrient content

Corn Hominy

Higher fibre and protein than corn; may contain higher energy if fat is not removed

Fababeans

High fibre content; anti-nutritional factors; low vitamin content

Fat, tallow

Quality can vary; high energy; useful for dust control; will go rancid if not stabilized with an antioxidant

Fat, soybean oil

High energy; useful for dust control; will go rancid if not stabilized with an antioxidant

Fish Meal

Variable nutrient content depending on the source; high in lysine, methionine, calcium and phosphorus; high inclusion can result in fishy flavour in pork

Flax

Rich source of omega-3 fatty acids and lignans

Lupins, sweet white

High fibre content; anti-nutritional factors; low availability of lysine

Meat Meal

High in lysine, calcium and phosphorus; variable protein quantity and quality; lower digestibility and availability of protein than to soybean meal

Milk, skim or whole (dried)

High quality protein; very palatable; highly digestible; high lysine content; expensive

Oats

High fibre, low energy

Oats, hulless

Low lysine; palatable; variable protein content; expensive

Peas

Low levels of anti-nutritional factors; variable protein content; good amino acid profile; low in methionine

Potato Chips

High energy; contain considerable vegetable fat taken up in cooking

Rye

Similar to wheat in nutrient content; susceptible to ergot contamination; anti-nutritional factors; dusty and unpalatable if ground too finely

Soybean Meal

With (44%) or without (48%) hulls; good amino acid balance in combination with corn; palatable

Soybeans, roasted

Higher energy and lower protein than soybean meal; can cause undesirable after-taste in pork at high inclusion

Sucrose

Very palatable; very digestible; increases feed intake

Triticale

High protein and lysine content compared to corn; large variation in nutrient content between varieties; some varieties have anti-nutritional factors and poor palatability

Wheat, hard red spring

Lower in energy than corn; similar to corn in digestibility and palatability; higher protein but similar lysine to corn; dusty and unpalatable if ground too finely

Wheat, soft white winter

Higher in energy than corn; similar to corn in digestibility, palatability and protein; dusty and unpalatable if ground too finely

Wheat Bran

Variable protein content; high fibre; low energy; low digestibility; acts as a laxative

Wheat Middlings and Shorts

Compared to corn - higher in protein and lysine; similar in energy; digestible; palatable

Whey, dried or liquid

Good quality protein; dry product can be expensive; feeding liquid whey increases manure volume by 2 to 3 times

 


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