Consistency in the cost-effectiveness of pig diets can be difficult to control, but determines profitability. Anco FIT focuses on managing gut agility for more reliable returns.
With up to 70% of production costs coming from the cost of feed, consistency in the cost-effectiveness of diets is key to profitability. To maximize profit opportunity, producers must be diligent in developing feeding strategies that result in best returns over feed and/or margin over feed and facility costs. However, nutritional stressors in the diet, such as reduced nutrient digestibility, endotoxins, antinutrients and mycotoxins, often throw a spanner in the works of consistency in performance in response to diets. Depending on the increased presence or absence of those stressors the same diet can differ in cost-effectiveness. These stressors are often not easy to control for the nutritionist and are part of the reality that animals are facing in modern production systems.
Nutritional stressors reduce cost-efficiency
When challenged with nutritional stress factors, stress reactions such as oxidative stress, reduced gut integrity, inflammation, reduced appetite and shifts in gut microflora will be triggered in the pig. This not only reduces growth performance, but also feed efficiency and thus the cost-effectiveness of diets. Feed efficiency is reduced due to energy wasted on stress reactions instead of being used for productive purposes.
For instance, under oxidative stress and inflammation, 30% of the performance drop is explained by the catabolism and feed conversion needed to manage inflammation.
Oxidative stress is defined as the presence of reactive oxygen species (ROS) in excess of the available antioxidant capacity of animal cells. Oxidative stress is a major factor related to the development of inflammatory diseases.
Increases in intestinal permeability raise the possibility of translocation of bacteria and/or their toxins across the more permeable gut barrier. The resulting endotoxemia can trigger disease onset and progression. The increase in translocation of endotoxins across the intestinal barrier can also stimulate immune cells to secrete pro-inflammatory cytokines and prostaglandins like PGE2, resulting in low-grade inflammation, which again can waste metabolic energy.
Regardless of the triggering cause, the innate immune and inflammatory response is triggered in the pig to achieve a better ability to deal with infectious and noninfectious stressors. At the same time this response needs to be accurately controlled to avoid tissue damage and waste of metabolic energy.
Certain mycotoxins, such as DON (deoxynivalenol) are known to cause the type of stress reactions mentioned above in pigs. DON also has a significant impact on feed intake in pigs, resulting in reduced growth performance. It is globally the most prevalent mycotoxin in feed stuffs and difficult to control. Therefore, it can also play a significant role in the cost-effectiveness of diets.
What if pigs were more resistant
Ideally the response to nutritional stress factors should consume as little energy as possible or stress reactions should be minimal for better and more consistent feed efficiency. This would be the case if animals were inherently more resistant to nutritional stress factors or were able to adapt to nutritional stressors more energy efficiently.
There is scientific evidence suggesting that for genetic selection, improving the ability of pigs to cope with stressors may be a better way of improving pig performance than selecting only for increased growth potential. That means the pig needs to be able to adapt faster and more adequately to dietary changes and stress factors for efficient growth performance. Genetic selection is certainly going to play an important role for advancement in this capability of the pig.
Nutritional strategies supporting the speed and efficacy with which the pig adapts to stressors will bring a more immediate competitive advantage in pig production. Most importantly, the ability of the animal to cope with the stressors will also impact the return on investment of diet formulations and profitability of the producer.
Managing gut agility for robust pigs
The gut is particularly responsive to stressors, hence why the emphasis is on the gut when improving the pig’s adaptive response. Gut agility is a new term coined to describe the pig’s ability to adapt to nutritional stressors in a faster and more energy-efficient response than it normally would.
Agile nutritional concepts are designed to boost gut agility and empower animals to adapt to a variety of nutritional stress factors, including mycotoxins, making them more robust and energy efficient. They rely on bioactive substances derived from plants that reduce negative stress reactions, such as oxidative stress, inflammation, reduced gut integrity and reduced feed intake generally seen in response to stressors.
The animal becomes more robust in the face of dietary challenges, resulting in more consistent high performance and well-being. This again will contribute to consistency in the cost-effectiveness of diets under commercial conditions.
Application of Anco FIT
Anco FIT is a gut agility activator, designed to manage gut agility by dietary means and is applied as a feed additive to complete feed. Application of Anco FIT to pig diets empowers animals to adapt to nutritional stress factors more efficiently and live up to their performance potential. For the nutritionist, it provides greater control over the cost-effectiveness of diets.
Nursery diets: Anco FIT is recommended in nursery diets to help piglets adapt to feed transitions quicker and support its defense against nutritional stress factors, including mycotoxins. Expected results are improved feed intakes and growth performance during this important developmental stage of the pig.
Grow-finish diets: In group housing situations feed intake is generally constrained by physical and behavioural factors and energy available from diets will determine commercial performance particularly in the finishing phase. Anco FIT is applied to grow-finish diets to reduce the waste of metabolic energy on stress reactions such as oxidative stress and inflammation. The boost to gut agility also supports efficient nutrient adsorption from the gut. Expected results are greater feed efficiency particularly in the face of nutritional stress factors.
Sow lactation diets: Energy demands on modern highly prolific sows are incredibly high during lactation. Efficient dietary energy utilization by the sow during lactation will not only affect litter performance, but also subsequent reproductive performance of the sow. Anco FIT is applied to sow lactation diets to reduce the waste of metabolic energy on stress reactions such as oxidative stress and inflammation. The boost to gut agility also supports efficient nutrient adsorption from the gut. Expected results are high lactation performance and subsequent reproductive capability from improved/more consistent energy efficiency in sows.
For more information on Anco FIT please contact
Anco Animal Nutrition Competence GmbH
Phone: 0043 2742 90502