In order to determine the relative digestibilities of nitrogen and amino acids in foodstuffs for pigs and poultry, and the effects of manufacturing methods, equal quantities of soya-bean meal, sunflower meals [hulled (sunflower meal 1) and dehulled (sunflower meal 2)], meat meals [made with (meat meal 1), and without (meat meal 2), blood added at 250 g/kg meat tissue (wet weights)] and rapeseed meals [seeds heated at 80°C (rapeseed meal 1) or 100°C (rapeseed meal 2)] were mixed with protein-free ingredients. The diets were given to five growing pigs with ileo-rectal anastomoses, and, by crop-intubation, to 12 caecectomized and 12 intact cocks. Excreta were collected over 48-h periods. Endogenous excretion was estimated by giving protein-free diets.
In the order, soya-bean meal, sunflower meals 1, and 2, meat meals 1, and 2, rapeseed meals 1, and 2, true digestibilities were: with pigs, of nitrogen, 0·81, 0·80, 0·79, 0·64, 0·79, 0·73, 0·70 (s.e.d. 0·030), of lysine, 0·84, 0·83, 0·84, 0·65, 0·84, 0·76, 0·72 (s.e.d. 0·032); with caecectomized birds, of nitrogen, 0·92, 0·91, 0·91, 0·66, 0·78, 0·74, 0·75 (s.e.d. 0·018), of lysine 0·92, 0·91, 0·93, 0·62, 0·79, 0·70, 0·70 (s.e.d. 0·020); with intact birds, values were similar to those with caecectomized birds for soya-bean, and the sunflower meals, but lesser for meat meals 1 and 2; the solubilities of nitrogen in pepsin were 0·96, 0·92, 0·93, 0·80, 0·89, 0·87, 0·87.
Two hundred and eighty pigs (initial live weights 10 kg) were used to compare growth response to free lysine with that to lysine in soya-bean meal and sunflower meal 2. Lysine availabilities, assessed by analyses of regressions of live-weight gain against lysine intake were 0·82 (s.e. 0·12) for soya-bean meal, and 0·82 (s.e. 0·18) for sunflower meal 2.
Amino acid digestibilities of the sunflower meals were similar to those of soya-bean meal, and were not influenced by dehulling; values for the rapeseed meals were lower, and unaffected by differences in heating severity; values for the meat meal were reduced by blood addition. Values differed between pigs and poultry, but there was consistency in the extent to which each species discriminated between some foodstuffs. The pepsin test was insensitive. The large standard errors associated with availability values prevented meaningful comparisons with digestibility values.