Evaluation of sunflower meal as a feed ingredient in broiler chicken diets: the effect of using supplemental fat or pelleting

Zatari, Ibtisam
Major Professor
Jerry L. Sell
Committee Member
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Animal Science
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Animal Science

Four experiments were conducted to evaluate sunflower meal (SF) as a feed ingredient in broiler chicken diets. Experiment I was done to determine apparent nitrogen-corrected metabolizable energy (MEn) of the major feed ingredients that were used in subsequent experiments. The determined MEns (kcal/kg) of the feed ingredients were: corn, 3280; soybean meal, 2320; SF, 940; and animal-vegetable (A-V) fat, 6805. Experiment II was designed to determine the MEn of diets containing 0, 10, or 20% SF as affected by A-V fat supplementation at 0 or 6% of the diet. MEns of the diets were determined at 2, 4, 6 and 7 weeks of age. MEn of the diet decreased with each 10% increment of SF and increased with the addition of 6% A-V fat to the diet. Dietary MEns improved with age, especially in the fat supplemented diets containing 10 or 20% SF. There were significant SF by fat level and age by fat level interaction effects on MEn. Experiment III was conducted to evaluate the performance of chickens fed diets containing 0, 10 or 20% SF as affected by fat supplementation at 0 or 6% of the diet. Body weight gain (BG) of chicks fed diets containing 10% SF was the same as that of the controls. However, the addition of SF at 20% of diet depressed BG. Feed consumption (FC) was increased and feed efficiency (feed/gain) (FE) was impaired by the inclusion of SF at 10 or 20% of the diet. The use of 6% A-V fat increased BG and improved FE, but had no effect on FC, irrespective of the level of SF in the diet. The relative weights of proventriculus, gizzard, jejunum and ileum were increased by the inclusion of up to 20% SF in the diet. Experiment IV was done to determine the effects of feeding pelleted diets containing 0, 10 or 20% SF on the performance and nutrient utilization of broiler chickens. Pelleting increased BG and FC and improved FE. The inclusion of 10 or 20% SF reduced BG and impaired FE. The beneficial effects of pelleting on performance of broiler chickens were more pronounced with diets containing SF than with the control. MEn and utilization of nutrients were improved by pelleting, irrespective of the SF level in the diet. Results show that sunflower meal can be used up to 20% of broiler chicken diets provided that supplemental fat and/or diet pelleting are used to secure adequate energy intake necessary for growth.