Energy balance of lactating primiparous sows as affected by feeding level and dietary energy source

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The effects of feeding level and major dietary energy source used during lactation on sow milk composition, piglet body composition, and energy balance of sows were determined. During a 21-d lactation, 48 primiparous sows were fed either a Fat-rich (134.9 g/kg fat; 196.8 g/kg carbohydrate) or a Starch-rich (33.2 g/kg fat; 380.9 g/kg carbohydrate) diet at either a High (44 MJ NE/d; 1,050 g protein/d) or a Low (33 MJ NE/d; 790 g protein/d) feeding level. Within each feeding level, the two diets were fed to provide an isocaloric and isonitrogenous intake. At the Low feeding level, no differences in milk production, milk composition, or piglet body composition were found as a result of feeding the two dietary energy sources. However, at the High feeding level, sows fed the Fat-rich diet produced higher milk fat (8.4 vs 6.9€and milk energy (5.38 vs 4.77 kJ/g) concentrations and a higher piglet body fat concentration (152.1 vs 135.4 g/kg) than sows fed the Starch-rich diet. At the Low feeding level, the energy balance (d 6 to d 20) of the sows was similar when fed either the Fat- or the Starch-rich diet (-558 and -515 kJ x BW(-.75) x d(-1)), but at the High feeding level, the energy balance was more negative in sows fed the Fat than those fed the Starch-rich diet (-544 vs -372 kJ x BW(-.75) x d(-1)). This suggests that at the High feeding level, dietary energy in the form of fat is preferentially used for milk fat synthesis, resulting in growth and in fatter piglets. Alternatively, at the High feeding level, Starch as the major energy source is used only for growth of the piglets, as confirmed by protein deposition, and also results in a less-negative energy balance for the sows. From this experiment, it can be concluded that effects of substituting cornstarch for fat in the diet of lactating sows on milk composition, piglet body composition, and energy balance of the sows are dependent on feeding level.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1520-1528
JournalJournal of Animal Science
Publication statusPublished - 2000


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