When prices go up, we’re all inclined to find a cheaper source for any ingredient, especially in piglet formulas where margins have become so small in the last few years. But, there is a line which we should not cross, as pigs will respond by simply refusing to eat sub-optimal diets.
This is the case for whey, a very central ingredient in many high-quality piglet diets. Whey quality varies considerably according to manufacturing process. The drying process is the most crucial part as during drying protein quality can deteriorate very easily.
In the photo are three representative samples of commercial whey products, all of which are being used currently in different formulas, including some from very respectable brands in the industry. In my opinion, only the light pale, off-cream product is worthy using in high quality diets. As demonstrated in the following table, piglets also agree with this assessment!
Another frequent controversy regarding whey is the choice between sweet or acid whey. Here, I prefer the sweet one, but others have had good results with acid whey.