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Open AccessArticle

Effect of Dietary Replacement of Fishmeal by Insect Meal on Growth Performance, Blood Profiles and Economics of Growing Pigs in Kenya

1
Laboratory of Entomology, Wageningen University & Research, 6700AA Wageningen, The Netherlands
2
International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology, Nairobi 00100, Kenya
3
Department of Animal Sciences, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology, Nairobi 00200, Kenya
4
Non-Ruminant Research Institute (NRI), Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO), Naivasha 20117, Kenya
5
Non-Ruminant Research Institute (NRI). Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organization (KALRO), Kakamega 50100, Kenya
6
International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA), BP 2008 (Messa), Nkolbisson, Yaoundé, Cameroon
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors equally contributed to the manuscript.
Animals 2019, 9(10), 705; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani9100705
Received: 8 August 2019 / Revised: 16 September 2019 / Accepted: 18 September 2019 / Published: 20 September 2019
(This article belongs to the Collection Insects as Animal Feed: a New Promising Sector)
Pig keeping is an important source of income but the high cost of fishmeal (FM), which is the main protein source in animal feeds, has hindered the sector from realizing its full potential. As an alternative, we investigated the suitability of a meal derived from black soldier fly larvae (BSFLM) as a protein source. Pigs were fed different diet types: Control (no BSFLM: 0% (T0)), 25% (T25), 50% (T50), 75% (T75) and 100% (T100) replacement of FM by BSFLM. Average daily feed intake, body weight gain and feed conversion ratio were not affected by the replacement of FM by BSFLM. Red or white blood cell parameters did not differ among diets, except for neutrophil counts, which were higher at T75 and T100 compared to T0. At T25, T75 and T100, pigs had lower platelet counts compared to pigs fed T0 and T50. Dietary BSFLM inclusion did not influence blood cholesterol levels. The cost–benefit ratio and return on investment were similar across diets. Our study shows that BSFLM is a suitable and cost-effective alternative to FM in pig feeds.
Pig production is one of the fastest growing livestock sectors. Development of this sector is hampered by rapidly increasing costs of fishmeal (FM), which is a common protein source in animal feeds. Here, we explored the potential of substituting FM with black soldier fly larval meal (BSFLM) on growth and blood parameters of pigs as well as economic aspects. At weaning, 40 hybrid pigs, i.e., crossbreeds of purebred Large White and Landrace were randomly assigned to five iso-nitrogenous and iso-energetic dietary treatments: Control (0% BSFLM and 100% FM (T0)), and FM replaced at 25% (T25), 50% (T50), 75% (T75) and 100% (T100) with BSFLM. Average daily feed intake (ADFI), average daily gain (ADG), body weight gain (BWG) and feed conversion ratio (FCR) were calculated for the whole trial. Hematological and serum biochemical parameters, the cost–benefit ratio (CBR) and return on investment (RoI) were evaluated. No significant effect of diet type was observed on feed intake and daily weight gain. Red or white blood cell indices did not differ among diets. Pigs fed T25, T75 and T100, had lower platelet counts compared to T0 and T50. Dietary inclusion of BSFLM did not affect blood total cholesterol, triglycerides, low-density lipoprotein and high-density lipoprotein. CBR and RoI were similar for the various diets. In conclusion, BSFLM is a suitable and cost-effective alternative to fishmeal in feed for growing pigs. View Full-Text
Keywords: growing pigs; blood parameters; insect larval meal; alternative protein; animal feeds; cost benefit analysis; return on investment growing pigs; blood parameters; insect larval meal; alternative protein; animal feeds; cost benefit analysis; return on investment
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Chia, S.Y.; Tanga, C.M.; Osuga, I.M.; Alaru, A.O.; Mwangi, D.M.; Githinji, M.; Subramanian, S.; Fiaboe, K.K.M.; Ekesi, S.; van Loon, J.J.A.; Dicke, M. Effect of Dietary Replacement of Fishmeal by Insect Meal on Growth Performance, Blood Profiles and Economics of Growing Pigs in Kenya. Animals 2019, 9, 705.

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