Effect of Conventional or Plant-Based Diets on the Productivity of Broiler Chickens
The study was conducted to investigate the gross responses, meat yield traits and excreta/litter quality of broilers fed diets based on only plant ingredients or conventional diets containing animal protein. A total of 320 day-old male broiler chicks (Cobb 500) was distributed randomly into five treatments (T1, T2, T3, T4 and T5), each replicated eight times with eight chicks per replicate in a completely randomized block design. Diets T1 and T2 were formulated with entirely plant ingredients, whereas diets T3 and T4 were conventional, and contained both plant and animal ingredients. Diet T5 was used as control, basically contained plant ingredients except for tallow mixer. All diets were iso-energetic and iso-nitrogenous in nature, cold-pelleted and fed the birds ad libitum from d1-35 days. Live weight up to 35d was improved (P<0.05) in the birds that were fed greater (P<0.01) amount of conventional diets (T3, T4) than those on plant-based or control diets. Feed conversion ratio (FCR) and performance index (PI) differed significantly (P<0.01) between treatment up to 14 days only. Birds fed conventional (T3 and T4)diets tended to be more efficient in both FCR and PI than those of other diet group, although the differences between treatment were non-significant (P>0.05) on day 35. Mortality was unaffected (P>0.05) between treatment. Excreta pH values and the concentration of ammonia were not influenced (P>0.05) by treatment. Higher (P<0.01) dry matter content was found in the conventional diets (T3 and T4)than the plant-based (T1, T2) or control diets (T5). Except for abdominal fat content, the other meat yield characteristics such as dressing percentage, breast weight, thigh weight, drumstick weight, giblet weight, shank weight, neck weight etc., were not influenced (P>0.05) by dietary treatments. Birds fed conventional diets (T3 and T4) demonstrated increased (P<0.01) abdominal fat content compared to other dietary treatments. Breast weight (%) tended to be increased (P<0.08) in the birds when the birds fed on plant-based diet (T1). In conclusion, the productivity of broilers fed conventional diets was better than those fed on plant-based diets only.
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