Keywords: Zeolites, Egg production, Eggshell quality, Laying hen, Fatty acids.
Abstract: Background: The health benefits of omega-3 and omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA) are generally recognized. Unfortunately, in most Mediterranean countries, the recommended daily intake of these compounds is rarely met. Therefore, enrichment of commonly occurring foods can boost intake of these fatty acids. In this regard, eggs are an interesting target, as they form an integral part of the diet.
Result: Zeolite (Clinoptilolites) was added to Laying Hens feed at concentrations 1% or 2% and was evaluated for its effects on performance of the production and on egg quality. The Laying Hens were given access to 110 g of feed mixtures daily that was either a basal diet or a ‘zeolite diet’ (the basal diet supplemented with clinoptilolite at a level of 1% or 2%). It was found that zeolite treatment had a positive and significatif (p<0.05) effect on some parameters that were measured like egg height and eggshell strength. While dietary zeolite supplementation tended to/or has no significant effects on total egg, eggshell, yolk and albumen weights. It was found also that zeolite mainly increases level of polyunsaturated fatty acids in egg.
Conclusion: This study showed the significance of using zeolite, as a feed additive for Laying Hens, as part of a comprehensive program to control egg quality and to increase level of polyunsaturated fatty acids on egg.
Authors: Imen Fendri, Lamia Khannous, Zouhir Mallek, Al Ibrahim Traore, Néji Gharsallah and Radhouane Gdoura
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