Matching poultry production with available feed resources: issues and constraints
Corn and soyabeans may not be available in many countries particularly those which do not have sufficient foreign currency or the capacity to grow them. This paper outlines strategies that may be important under these circumstances. Alternative feed stuffs and various feeding systems may be used to support poultry production. Alternative ingredients such as rice bran, pearl millet, cottonseed meal and grain legumes are discussed. Evidence is presented showing that amino acid requirements of layers and broilers may be too generous particularly in countries where climate, management and disease can impose production constraints. The ability of finishing broilers to perform well on very low-energy diets allows the inclusion of alternative feeds and by-products into formulations. Very low protein diets based on cereals and free amino acids can be used for layers without loss of performance. Self-selection of feedstuffs may be an important strategy in reducing feed costs of broilers and layers. The concept of matching production with available feed resources may compromise broiler growth and egg production, but in many countries this may be the most economical choice. Countries in the humid tropics usually have reduced poultry performance. The effects of high temperature and humidity are difficult to overcome. The vexed questions of the escalation in the price of fossil fuel and the outbreak of avian influenza, both seemingly without a solution, are clouds hanging over an otherwise buoyant industry.
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24 August 2010
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