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Article

Effect on Broiler Production Performance and Meat Quality of Feeding Ulva lactuca Supplemented with Carbohydrases

1
CIISA—Centro de Investigação Interdisciplinar em Sanidade Animal, Faculdade de Medicina Veterinária, Universidade de Lisboa, 1300-477 Lisboa, Portugal
2
Laboratório Associado para Ciência Animal e Veterinária (AL4AnimalS), Faculdade de Medicina Veterinária, Universidade de Lisboa, 1300-477 Lisboa, Portugal
3
LEAF—Linking Landscape, Environment, Agriculture and Food, Instituto Superior de Agronomia, Universidade de Lisboa, 1349-017 Lisboa, Portugal
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INSA—Departamento de Alimentação e Nutrição, Instituto Nacional de Saúde Doutor Ricardo Jorge, Avenida Padre Cruz, 1649-016 Lisboa, Portugal
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Academic Editor: Vincenzo Tufarelli
Animals 2022, 12(13), 1720; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12131720
Received: 6 June 2022 / Revised: 24 June 2022 / Accepted: 1 July 2022 / Published: 2 July 2022
(This article belongs to the Section Animal Nutrition)
Macroalgae have been increasingly exploited worldwide for feed, food and biofuel applications, due to their nutritive and bioactive compounds. Green seaweeds belonging to the genus Ulva have high growth rates, which makes them suitable for being cultured in sustainable algae production, such as an integrated multi-trophic aquaculture system. This is expected to increase the use of Ulva sp. as an alternative source to conventional feedstuffs (e.g., cereals and soybean meal) for poultry. The objective of the current study was to assess if the incorporation of 15% Ulva lactuca in broiler chickens’ diet, combined or not with carbohydrate-active enzymes, would enhance meat nutritional quality without compromising animal growth performance. Overall, U. lactuca led to an accumulation of antioxidant carotenoids, n-3 PUFA and macrominerals, including magnesium, potassium and phosphorus, in the breast muscle, with likely health benefits, without significantly impairing growth performance. The supplementation of macroalgae with a recombinant ulvan lyase reduced ileal viscosity with possible beneficial effects on broiler digestibility. Although dietary U. lactuca showed potential to increase meat quality, it reduced meat overall acceptability, which suggests the use of a lower algae inclusion level to prevent a negative meat sensory perception for consumers.
The aim of the study was to test if feeding 15% U. lactuca to broilers, alone or combined with carbohydrases, enhanced meat nutritional quality, without compromising growth performance. One hundred and twenty 22-day-old broilers were allocated to the following diets and replicated 10 times for 14 days: (1) maize and soy-based diet (control); (2) control with 15% U. lactuca (UL); (3) UL diet with 0.005% commercial carbohydrase mixture (ULC); and (4) UL diet with 0.01% ulvan lyase (ULE). Final body weight and average daily gain decreased (p < 0.050) with the ULE diet compared with the control, but no significant differences were found for the other diets. The intestinal viscosity increased (p < 0.001) with all alga diets but was lowered (p < 0.050) in the ileum with the ULE diet, relative to UL and ULC diets. Meat lightness and redness values, off-flavours, and total carotenoids increased (p < 0.001), while yellow values, tenderness, juiciness, overall acceptability, α- and γ-tocopherol, and total lipids decreased (p < 0.001) with alga diets. The n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) increased (p < 0.050), and the n-6/n-3 PUFA ratio decreased (p < 0.001) with the ULE diet. Total minerals in meat increased (p < 0.001) with alga diets, conversely to sodium and zinc (p < 0.001). Feeding 15% of U. lactuca to broilers did not impair growth but increased meat nutritional value through the accumulation of health-promoting antioxidant carotenoids, n-3 PUFA and total minerals, although reducing overall meat acceptability. View Full-Text
Keywords: Ulva lactuca; carbohydrase; poultry growth; meat quality; broiler Ulva lactuca; carbohydrase; poultry growth; meat quality; broiler
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MDPI and ACS Style

Costa, M.M.; Pestana, J.M.; Carvalho, P.; Alfaia, C.M.; Martins, C.F.; Carvalho, D.; Mourato, M.; Gueifão, S.; Delgado, I.; Coelho, I.; Lemos, J.P.C.; Lordelo, M.M.; Prates, J.A.M. Effect on Broiler Production Performance and Meat Quality of Feeding Ulva lactuca Supplemented with Carbohydrases. Animals 2022, 12, 1720. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12131720

AMA Style

Costa MM, Pestana JM, Carvalho P, Alfaia CM, Martins CF, Carvalho D, Mourato M, Gueifão S, Delgado I, Coelho I, Lemos JPC, Lordelo MM, Prates JAM. Effect on Broiler Production Performance and Meat Quality of Feeding Ulva lactuca Supplemented with Carbohydrases. Animals. 2022; 12(13):1720. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12131720

Chicago/Turabian Style

Costa, Mónica M., José M. Pestana, Patrícia Carvalho, Cristina M. Alfaia, Cátia F. Martins, Daniela Carvalho, Miguel Mourato, Sandra Gueifão, Inês Delgado, Inês Coelho, José P. C. Lemos, Madalena M. Lordelo, and José A. M. Prates. 2022. "Effect on Broiler Production Performance and Meat Quality of Feeding Ulva lactuca Supplemented with Carbohydrases" Animals 12, no. 13: 1720. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12131720

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