Liquid feeding has the potential to bring major savings in the cost of production for British pig farmers.
Results from a trial funded by the British Pig Executive (BPEX) and Defra show costs of production could be cut by as much as 9p per kg deadweight by using co-products in liquid feeding.
The multi-disciplinary trial, managed by the Meat and Livestock Commission, studied just over 1,000 pigs, at the Stotfold Pig development Unit, from 35kg to slaughter weight averaging 102kg. The trial compared straw-based and fully slatted systems and used both single diet and phase feeding.
Better growth The liquid feed was formulated using co-products along with cereals and ingredients including soya meal and rapeseed meal. Single feeding showed a growth rate was 886 grams per day while phase feeding returned 860 grams per day, both comparing favourably with the first trial where dry feeding was compared with liquid in which no co-products were used. Here growth rates were just under 800 grams a day.
Potential from co-products MLC pig technical manager Dr Pinder Gill said: “This trial shows the tremendous potential benefits from using co-products and liquid feeding.” This would be a big help in realising a dramatic cut in the costs of production coupled with an improvement in efficiency. “This is very important for achieving our aim of improving the competitiveness of the British pig industry.”