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Analysis of Pig Feed Formulations Essay

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Updated: May 6th, 2022

Pig feed at the present contains an amalgam of ingredients that focuses on developing a sufficiently plump and heavy specimen as opposed to creating one that is of moderate size yet is far healthier in comparison. Modern-day pig feeds contain ingredients such as ground corn, ground oats, animal fat, dried whey, soybean meal, animal by-products such as fish meal and bone meal as well as various ingredients such as Menadione Dimethylpyrimidinol Bisulfite, and Pyridoxine Hydrochloride. Various synthetic amino acids are also utilized as a more economically viable option to provide the necessary proteins for growth as compared to the use of various types of fish meal and bone meal in order to meet the amino acid needs of your average swine. While pig feed is generally cheaper as compared to other types of feeds utilized for animals, it is generally inferior in overall nutritional content. For example, an examination of the feeds utilized on fish, domesticated cats and dogs as well as chickens reveals a higher percentage of vitamins, minerals, as well as better sources of protein as compared to those utilized within pig feed.

Not only that, such feeds often do not derive their carbohydrate content exclusively from inferior sources such as soybean husks, ground corn, or ground oats but rather focus on deriving it from better wheat-based sources. All of this equates to a meal product that is nutritionally better for such animals as compared to the amalgam of ingredients that are fed to pigs. On the other hand, what you have to understand about pig feed is that not only is it cheaper, easily digestible and can be fed to pigs at almost any point during their development stages, its main purpose is to bulk up pigs at an incredibly fast rate (Emiola and Gous, 79-86). This means that many of its active ingredients have synthetic amino acids and growth formulas that have been specifically engineered to increase growth and development. The inherent problem though with such ingredients being included in pig feed is that this actually creates the potential for a certain level of toxicity to build up within pigs if they are overfed. Also, specific types of pig feeds cannot be fed to pigs that are 10 weeks away from slaughter in order to prevent the addition of potentially toxic or harmful chemicals and hormones from being present within the pig prior to being killed.

Overall, it is my opinion that the current ingredients that go into creating pig feed can only be described as creating the potential for spillover effects to occur in human consumers. It is still relatively unknown if the hormones and chemicals that go into encouraging the growth and development of pigs are actually effectively removed prior to them being butchered. Not only that, there are numerous health concerns as well with the quality of the meat that is produced by feeding pigs from nutritionally inferior sources. Various advocates of alternative methods of feeding swine populations have indicated that feeding pigs alternative and more natural feeds such as those derived from whole wheat, corn kernels, soybeans and not soy husks as well as a variety of other nutritionally better staples used for other species would result in meat that is healthier and free from any risky additives (Emiola and Gous, 79-86). From my point of view, such an alternative should be pursued given the potential harm the current types of feed pose to human consumers.

Works Cited

Emiola, I.A., and R.M. Gous. “Nutritional Evaluation Of Dehulled Faba Bean (Vicia Faba Cv. Fiord) In Feeds For Weaner Pigs.” South African Journal Of Animal Science 41.2 (2011): 79-86. Academic Search Premier. Web.

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