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Effects of dietary allicin on health and growth performance of weanling piglets and reduction in attractiveness of faeces to flies

  • R. H. Huang (a1), X. S. Qiu (a1), F. X. Shi (a1), C. L. Hughes (a2), Z. F. Lu (a3) and W. Y. Zhu (a1)...

Abstract

To investigate the effect of dietary allicin on health and growth performance of weanling piglets, at 21 days of age. Two hundred and twenty-five piglets were weaned and randomly allocated into five groups. Piglets in the control group were fed diets supplemented with antibiotics. Those in the treatment groups were fed diets without antibiotics, but supplemented with allicin product (25% pure allicin oil) in the proportion of 0.10 g/kg, 0.15 g/kg, 0.20 g/kg and 0.25 g/kg in the diet, respectively. During the 28 days of the experiment, average daily weight gain increased linearly (P < 0.0001) and quadratically (P = 0.0014) as the level of dietary allicin increased. The feed gain ratio decreased linearly (P < 0.0001) and quadratically (P < 0.0001). As the dietary allicin level increased, the incidence of diarrhoea in the treatment piglets, especially female piglets decreased linearly (P = 0.0003) and tended to decrease quadratically (P = 0.0716). The number of flies alighting on the surface of the faeces of the piglets at each counting time point decreased linearly (P < 0.0001), quadratically (P < 0.0001) and cubically (P < 0.0001) as the dietary allicin level increased. In conclusion, supplementation of the diet with allicin may improve growth performance, reduce the incidence of diarrhoea and possibly improve their local environmental conditions by reducing the attractiveness of faeces to flies.

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