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Evaluation of a decision support system for precision feeding of gestating sows

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Charlotte Gaillard (Inrae) et al., Journal of animal science, 2020, volume 98, n° 9, 1er septembre, p. 1-12

Precision feeding (PF) with the daily mixing of 2 diets with different lysine content (high (H) or low (L)) was previously reported for growing pigs to reduce protein intake and N excretion compared with a conventional feeding (CF) based on a single diet (C). Using a simulation approach based on farm data, the objective of the present paper was to describe and evaluate a decision support system for the PF of gestating sows allowing the daily distribution of a tailored ration to each sow. Two datasets, 1 of 2,511 gestations (farm A) and 1 of 2,528 gestations (farm B), reporting sows’ characteristics at insemination and objectives at farrowing were used as inputs for a Python model. This model, mainly based on InraPorc, calculates the nutrient requirements of each sow over gestation and simulates the impact of PF in comparison to CF. Simulated diets L, H, and C contained 3.0, 6.5, and 4.8 g/kg of standardized ileal digestible lysine (SID Lys) and 2.0, 3.3, and 2.5 g/kg of standardized total tract digestible phosphorus (STTD-P), respectively. The influence of farm, parity, gestation week, and their interactions, on calculated SID Lys and STTD-P requirements was analyzed applying a mixed model. The calculated SID Lys and STTD-P requirements increased markedly in the last third of gestation (P < 0.01) and were higher for primiparous than for multiparous sows, unless after week 14 for STTD-P requirement. The calculated SID AA and mineral requirements were lower for farm B than farm A (respectively, 2.94 vs. 3.08 g/kg for SID Lys and 1.30 vs. 1.35 g/kg for STTD-P, P >< 0.01). On average, feed L represented 86% and 92% of the feed projected to be delivered by the PF strategy in farms A and B, respectively. Compared to CF, average calculated dietary SID Lys content was lowered by 27% and 32% with PF, for farms A and B, respectively, while average calculated dietary phosphorus content was lowered by 13% and 16%. The simulated proportions of sows in excess and deficient in SID Lys were reduced with PF. Compared to CF, the PF strategy allowed for a 3.6% reduction in simulated feed cost per sow during gestation, and reduced nitrogen and phosphorus intake (by 11.0% and 13.8%, respectively) and excretion (by 16.7% and 15.4%, respectively). To conclude, these simulations indicate that PF of gestating sow appears to be relevant to meet the amino acid requirement while reducing feed cost, and supplies and excretion of nitrogen and phosphorus>

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