Feeding Strategies and Nutritional Quality of Animal Products—Volume II

A special issue of Agriculture (ISSN 2077-0472). This special issue belongs to the section "Farm Animal Production".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 25 July 2024 | Viewed by 6295

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Feed and Food Quality Department, National Research and Development Institute for Biology and Animal Nutrition, Calea Bucuresti, No. 1, 077015 Balotesti, Romania
Interests: oxidative stability of foods; food design; natural antioxidants and mechanisms of action; lipid peroxidation; food shelf life; in vivo and in vitro methods for antioxidant activity and bioavailability assessment; extraction methods; isolation of plant active compounds; waste valorization
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Guest Editor
National Research and Development Institute for Animal Biology and Nutrition Balotești, 077015 Ilfov, Romania
Interests: monogastric animals; phytoadditives; by-products; gut microbiota; heat stress; hydrophilic antioxidants; oxidative stress, meat quality
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Feeding strategies play a pivotal role in determining the nutritional composition of animal products. The unique digestive systems of ruminants can efficiently convert fibrous plant material into high-quality protein sources. Monogastric animals necessitate diets that are precisely formulated to meet their nutrient needs. This influences the growth rate, feed efficiency, and nutrient content of their final products. Understanding the interplay between feed composition, animal physiology, and final product quality in this emerging field is crucial for farmers, producers, and consumers. This knowledge is essential for fostering sustainable agricultural practices and providing consumers with high-quality, nutrient-rich food options. Additionally, environmental considerations have encouraged research into sustainable feeding strategies that minimize the ecological footprint of animal production while maintaining product quality.

This Special Issue aims to bring together research studies that investigate different feeding strategies, offering insights into optimizing animal diets to improve animal health and production, while enhancing the nutritional value and quality characteristics of animal-derived products.

This Special Issue is dedicated to being a platform for interdisciplinary studies on animal nutrition, physiology, chemistry, raising technologies, feeding strategies, and product quality. The articles will cover a wide range of topics related to feed quality, and the feed’s effect on production, animals’ health, and product quality.

All types of articles will be accepted, including original research, opinions, and reviews.

Dr. Petru Alexandru Vlaicu
Dr. Arabela Elena Untea
Dr. Mihaela Saracila
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Agriculture is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

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Keywords

  • feed quality and animal production
  • feed impact on production
  • animal nutrition and health
  • feed additives
  • food quality
  • metabolism
  • nutrition
  • dietary ingredients
  • nutrients

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

17 pages, 1998 KiB  
Article
Solid-State Fermentation Using Bacillus licheniformis-Driven Changes in Composition, Viability and In Vitro Protein Digestibility of Oilseed Cakes
by Dan Rambu, Mihaela Dumitru, Georgeta Ciurescu and Emanuel Vamanu
Agriculture 2024, 14(4), 639; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture14040639 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 261
Abstract
The solid-state fermentation (SSF) efficiency of Bacillus licheniformis ATCC 21424 (BL) on various agro-industrial by-products such as oilseed cakes [hemp (HSC), pumpkin (PSC), and flaxseed (FSC)] was evaluated by examining the nutritional composition, reducing sugars, and in vitro protein digestibility (IVPD) for use [...] Read more.
The solid-state fermentation (SSF) efficiency of Bacillus licheniformis ATCC 21424 (BL) on various agro-industrial by-products such as oilseed cakes [hemp (HSC), pumpkin (PSC), and flaxseed (FSC)] was evaluated by examining the nutritional composition, reducing sugars, and in vitro protein digestibility (IVPD) for use in animal nutrition. SSF significantly decreased crude protein, along with changes in the total carbohydrates (p < 0.05) for all substrates fermented. An increase in crude fat for HSC (1.04%) and FSC (1.73%) was noted, vs. PSC, where the crude fat level was reduced (−3.53%). Crude fiber does not differ significantly between fermented and nonfermented oilseed cakes (p > 0.05). After fermentation, neutral detergent fiber (NDF) and acid detergent fiber (ADF) significantly increased for HSC and FSC (p < 0.05), as well as for PSC despite the small increase in ADF (4.46%), with a notable decrease in NDF (−10.25%). During fermentation, pH shifted toward alkalinity, and after drying, returned to its initial levels for all oilseed cakes with the exception of PSC, which maintained a slight elevation. Further, SSF with BL under optimized conditions (72 h) increases the reducing sugar content for FSC (to 1.46%) and PSC (to 0.89%), compared with HSC, where a reduction in sugar consumption was noted (from 1.09% to 0.55%). The viable cell number reached maximum in the first 24 h, followed by a slowly declining phase until the end of fermentation (72 h), accompanied by an increase in sporulation and spore production. After 72 h, a significant improvement in water protein solubility for HSC and FSC was observed (p < 0.05). The peptide content (mg/g) for oilseed cakes fermented was improved (p < 0.05). Through gastro-intestinal simulation, the bacterial survivability rate accounted for 90.2%, 101.5%, and 85.72% for HSC, PSC, and FSC. Additionally, IVPD showed significant improvements compared to untreated samples, reaching levels of up to 65.67%, 58.94%, and 80.16% for HSC, PSC, and FSC, respectively. This research demonstrates the advantages of oilseed cake bioprocessing by SSF as an effective approach in yielding valuable products with probiotic and nutritional properties suitable for incorporation into animal feed. Full article
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12 pages, 923 KiB  
Article
Comparison of the Effect of Drying Treatments on the Physicochemical Parameters, Oxidative Stability, and Microbiological Status of Yellow Mealworm (Tenebrio molitor L.) Flours as an Alternative Protein Source
by Desislava Vlahova-Vangelova, Desislav Balev, Nikolay Kolev, Stefan Dragoev, Evgeni Petkov and Teodora Popova
Agriculture 2024, 14(3), 436; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture14030436 - 07 Mar 2024
Viewed by 749
Abstract
The increasing production of edible insects on an industrial scale makes it crucial to implement appropriate technologies after harvesting to process safe and high quality insect products. The aim of this work was to compare the impact of different drying treatments used in [...] Read more.
The increasing production of edible insects on an industrial scale makes it crucial to implement appropriate technologies after harvesting to process safe and high quality insect products. The aim of this work was to compare the impact of different drying treatments used in the production of flour from Tenebrio molitor larvae. The larvae were subjected to freeze-drying (FD), conventional drying (CD), microwave drying (MWD), microwave drying without freezing prior blanching (MWDL), and microwave drying with addition of 0.1% butylated hydroxytoluene (BHT) during the blanching of the larvae (MWDA). The studied parameters included water activity (aw), instrumental colour, chemical composition, lipid oxidative processes, antioxidant activity, as well as microbiological status. The freeze-drying and conventional drying of the larvae reduced the aw of the derived flours (p < 0.0001); however, their nutritional profile revealed lower protein (p < 0.0001) and considerably higher fat content (p < 0.0001) compared to the flours after microwave treatments. The conventional drying and microwave treatment with BHT induced significantly darker colour (p < 0.0001) in comparison to the other methods. Despite the advantages of the microwave drying as a fast and energy efficient method, it displayed some negative effects associated with low lipid stability such as higher acid value (AV) and secondary products of lipid oxidation (TBARS) (p < 0.0001). This was also observed in the MWDA flour, indicating a certain pro-oxidative effect of the BHT. Regardless of the drying method, all the flours had a low microbial load. Full article
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16 pages, 1946 KiB  
Article
Performance, Carcass Composition, and Meat Quality during Frozen Storage in Male Layer-Type Chickens
by Teodora Popova, Evgeni Petkov, Krasimir Dimov, Desislava Vlahova-Vangelova, Nikolay Kolev, Desislav Balev, Stefan Dragoev and Maya Ignatova
Agriculture 2024, 14(2), 185; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture14020185 - 26 Jan 2024
Viewed by 822
Abstract
An experiment was carried out in the Institute of Animal Science—Kostinbrod, Bulgaria, to investigate the growth performance of male layer-type chickens (Lohmann Brown Classic), raised to 6 and 9 weeks of age, to evaluate the economic aspects of this rearing, as well as [...] Read more.
An experiment was carried out in the Institute of Animal Science—Kostinbrod, Bulgaria, to investigate the growth performance of male layer-type chickens (Lohmann Brown Classic), raised to 6 and 9 weeks of age, to evaluate the economic aspects of this rearing, as well as to present changes in the quality characteristics of the meat during frozen storage. The chickens were reared in a controlled microclimate with an initial stocking density of 9 birds/m2. After 6 weeks of age, fragmentation of the stocking density was applied, and then it diminished to 3 birds/m2. The chickens were slaughtered at 6 and 9 weeks of age. Ten 9-week-old chickens were subjected to carcass analysis. Meat quality parameters (pH, color), degree of proteolysis (free amino groups), and lipid oxidation (content of peroxides and TBARS) were assessed in fresh breast and thigh meat (0 d) and in samples stored for 60 and 120 days at −18 °C in chickens slaughtered at 6 and 9 weeks old. The mean live weight of the male layer-type chickens at 6 weeks was 608.81 g, while the 9-week-old chickens reached 1115.93 g. The feed conversion ratio (FCR) for the whole period of rearing was 2.75. There were no considerable deviations in the meat traits, indicating quality deterioration over the course of the frozen storage. There was a significant increase in the pH of the breast and thighs, reaching maximum values for 60 days of storage in the 6-week-old chicks, while in the 9-week-old birds, pH peaked in the samples stored for 120 days. The changes in the dynamics of pH corresponded to those of proteolysis. There was an increase in lightness (L*), allowing for higher values in the samples stored for 60 days to be reached regardless of the type of meat and age of the chickens. The content of the peroxides increased considerably for 60 days of frozen storage and decreased afterwards. During storage, there was a constant increase in the secondary products of lipid oxidation. Our results indicated that the application of practices such as the fragmentation of stocking density and finding the suitable age for slaughter have significant importance for the profitability of producing meat product from male layer-type chickens. We found that rearing this type of bird until 9 weeks of age resulted in lower costs and higher economic efficiency. Full article
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12 pages, 259 KiB  
Article
Production Traits, Blood Metabolic Profile, and Antioxidative Status of Dairy Goats Fed a Red Corn Supplemented Feed Mixture
by Zvonko Antunović, Željka Klir Šalavardić, Josip Novoselec, Zvonimir Steiner, Mislav Đidara, Valentina Pavić, Lidija Jakobek Barron, Mario Ronta and Boro Mioč
Agriculture 2024, 14(1), 82; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture14010082 - 30 Dec 2023
Viewed by 863
Abstract
This study investigated the effect of red corn in the feed mixture of dairy goats on production traits, blood metabolic profile, and antioxidative status. The study was conducted on 30 French Alpine dairy goats. The feed mixture for the goats in the control [...] Read more.
This study investigated the effect of red corn in the feed mixture of dairy goats on production traits, blood metabolic profile, and antioxidative status. The study was conducted on 30 French Alpine dairy goats. The feed mixture for the goats in the control group (CC) contained yellow corn (100%). In the first experimental group (RC50), yellow corn was partially (50%) replaced by red corn (RC), and in the second experimental group (RC100), yellow corn was completely (100%) replaced by red corn. No significance variations (p > 0.05) were determined in production traits of dairy goats between dietary treatments. A significant increase in hemoglobin (84.43, 100.00 and 106.55 g/L), mean corpuscular hemoglobin (7.98, 9.70 and 12.54 pg), and mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration (293.57, 357.50 and 462.78 g/L) was found in the RC groups, and a decrease in erythrocytes in the RC100 compared with the RC50 group of goats (from 8.71 to 10.45 × 1012 L). A significant increase in blood superoxide dismutase (SOD) activity in the RC groups was found (0.29, 0.53, and 0.44 U/mL). The results indicate maintaining production traits and a moderate effect on blood metabolic profile (most hematologic parameters) as well as a positive antioxidative effect RC. Full article
12 pages, 622 KiB  
Article
Monitoring of Chemical and Fermentative Characteristics during Different Treatments of Grape Pomace Silage
by Tea Sokač Cvetnić, Veronika Gunjević, Anja Damjanović, Anita Pušek, Ana Jurinjak Tušek, Tamara Jakovljević, Ivana Radojčić Redovniković and Darko Uher
Agriculture 2023, 13(12), 2264; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture13122264 - 12 Dec 2023
Viewed by 1073
Abstract
Grape pomace is a fibrous food with satisfactory quantities of residual sugars. It meets the desirable characteristics for conservation in the form of silage for later use in animal feed, mainly for ruminant herbivores. Fresh grape pomace was subdivided into three treatment groups: [...] Read more.
Grape pomace is a fibrous food with satisfactory quantities of residual sugars. It meets the desirable characteristics for conservation in the form of silage for later use in animal feed, mainly for ruminant herbivores. Fresh grape pomace was subdivided into three treatment groups: grape pomace as a control, grape pomace treated with an inoculum of lactic acid bacteria, and grape pomace treated with zeolite. The treatments were performed in micro-silos over 90 days. There was a significant change (p < 0.05) in the chemical characteristics, content of biologically active compounds, and fermentative characteristics during the silage of all treatments. After 30, 60 and 90 days of ensiling, silages treated with inoculum and zeolite had better fermentation quality indicated by significantly (p < 0.05) lower pH and ammonia-nitrogen contents compared with those of the control. Also, the additives have decreased the total polyphenols and tannins for 97% in average which confirmed that lactic acid bacteria and zeolite positively effect on the degradation of polyphenols and tannins in grape pomace silage. The Flieg score was calculated and the values were above 80% what refers to excellent silage. In conclusion, our results suggest that inoculant and zeolite supplementation improves the quality of grape pomace silage for later use in animal feed. Full article
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29 pages, 2776 KiB  
Article
Effect of Different Levels of Calcium and Addition of Magnesium in the Diet on Garden Snails’ (Cornu aspersum) Condition, Production, and Nutritional Parameters
by Anna Rygało-Galewska, Klara Zglińska, Mateusz Roguski, Kamil Roman, Wiktor Bendowski, Damian Bień and Tomasz Niemiec
Agriculture 2023, 13(11), 2055; https://doi.org/10.3390/agriculture13112055 - 26 Oct 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1554
Abstract
Edible snails are an attractive protein source due to their high growth rate, cost-efficiency, and nutritional value. Calcium is crucial for snail growth, reproduction, and shell formation, while magnesium plays a role in enzyme function and muscle tone. This study aimed to optimise [...] Read more.
Edible snails are an attractive protein source due to their high growth rate, cost-efficiency, and nutritional value. Calcium is crucial for snail growth, reproduction, and shell formation, while magnesium plays a role in enzyme function and muscle tone. This study aimed to optimise calcium and magnesium levels in Cornu aspersum diets to optimise the production and technological characteristics of the derived animal products. Snails were fed specific diets in controlled conditions with varying calcium and magnesium levels (44.3, 66.1, 88.7, 103.5 Ca g/kg feed and 3.3, 5.6, 7.2 Mg g/kg feed) for four months. Their growth, shell characteristics, and meat composition were evaluated. As calcium in the feed increased, carcass and shell weights were higher. Also, the crushing force of the shells was higher with increasing amount of calcium in the feed. In the group with 10.35% calcium and 0.72% magnesium, snail growth significantly slowed down after three months, with lower mortality. It is suggested that a shortened fattening cycle by 3–4 weeks compared to the magnesium-free diet is possible. However, based on meat, shell, mortality, and feed intake analysis, a 0.56% magnesium concentration in the feed seems to give better results, as magnesium content at 0.72% might be toxic to snails. Further investigation is to confirm the possibility of neutralising the negative effects of magnesium in the diet through increasing calcium and phosphorus intake. Full article
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