In swine, the digestive tract is one of the first lines of defense against pathogenic organisms, and maintaining a healthy digestive tract enhances nutrient absorption, energy metabolism, immune response, and reduces the susceptibility to mycotoxins, as well as reducing the incidence of diarrhea. Amaferm® acts as a microbial stimulant to the beneficial microorganisms residing in the pigs’ digestive tract, and thus has prebiotic properties.
When considering swine, and how Amaferm® may aide in animal health, it is important to keep in mind what the intestinal tract does other than absorb glucose, amino acids, and minerals. Buddington and Weiher (1999) describe the gastrointestinal tract as an ecosystem, and suggest that fermentable fiber in the diet can be used as a “management tool” to affect the resident microbiological population.
Potential benefits of fermentable fiber include the reduction in relative abundance of pathogenic organisms that occur during diarrhea (Oli et al., 1998), the increased production of metabolites such as the short chain fatty acids (SCFA) acetate, propionate, and butyrate, the production of vitamins, and the reduction in the growth of pathogenic organisms (Wang and Gibson, 1993).
The digestive tract must be considered a complex, highly organized system, and maintaining the health of the digestive tract has a direct impact on the whole animal. Amaferm® has been shown to stimulate the growth rate and enzyme activities of the naturally occurring, beneficial microorganisms in the digestive tract of animals and to increase the SCFA production by those microorganisms. Therefore, Amaferm® helps improve the health of the digestive tract of swine.
Gain and Efficiency
Since feed costs comprise about 60 to 70 percent of the total costs of swine production, efforts to improve efficiency will pay big dividends. How efficiently the pig uses the energy from its feed can vary depending on whether it is used for maintenance including pig activity, protein or lean gain, and lipid or fat deposition. In general, about 30 to 35% of the energy consumed by the pig is used for maintenance, 20% to 25% for protein gain and the remaining 45% to 50% is used for lipid gain. Maximizing the digestibility of the diet to ensure the most extraction of energy can improve efficiency. Amaferm® has been shown to increase ADG by 19.8% and Feed to Gain by 12.7% in growing pigs.
Amaferm® Impacts Gain/Growth
|Weight Gain (g/hd/day)||434a||520d||19.8%|
|Feed Intake (g/hd/day)||692a||727a||5.1%|
a,b,c,d: mean values within a row with different letters are significantly different (P<0.05)
Kang, et al., 8th Animal Science Congress of AAAP, Tokyo, 1996.