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Cereal Milling and How It Affects Efficiency and Health in Pigs

Cereal milling is a common practice within the animal feed industry. Making use of processing methods that allow the modification of ingredients in order to make them more suitable for their inclusion in animal diets. However sometimes such modifications tend to favor industrial purposes that don’t always translate into production or health benefits for the animals. Pig feed costs account for 65-80% of total production costs. This has led producers to take advantage of feed manufacturing practices to maximise the use of raw materials. Properly managed, the increase in the cost associated with the manufacture of feed translates into an improvement in the performance of pigs. Grains are the main ingredient in pig feed susceptible to grinding. Other ingredients are pre-processed and arrive at the feed mill under acceptable conditions. Cereal milling has great impact in pig health and production costs. The two most commonly used mills for reducing ingredient particle size are roller mills and hammer mills. It is well documented that reducing the particle size of grains improves feed efficiency of pigs. However, previous studies reveal great variability regarding what can be considered the optimal particle size. Considering the negative effects of particle size reduction on milling efficiency, it is important to further investigate whether these losses are justified by improvements in animal performance. Good manufacturing practices are essential to ensure a low cost-benefit ratio and not only is it important to fully understand each processing method and its effects, but it is also necessary to understand how processing influences pig yields and health. While reducing the particle size of grains can improve pig performance, it can have very negative effects on gastric morphology.Therefore an extensive review and analysis is necessary when taking decisions regarding feed processing and what may be the optimal feed particle size in pigs. #cerealmilling #feedprocessing #pignutrition # pigdiets #animalnutrition # pighealth  

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