Feed conversionis an indicator of economic efficiency of feeding and technology of keeping animals.
Conversion is the ratio of the amount of feed consumed per unit of output, such as 1 kg of growth or 1 kg of eggs. Accordingly, the lower this figure, the more efficient the raising of poultry or animals is.
The traditional and simplest method of determining feed conversion is the ratio of weight gain per unit of feed consumed. The last component of the formula is sometimes replaced by the amount of energy the animal received from the feed. Despite the fact that such a calculation is quite simple, some practical mistakes are still made. For example, it is not the amount of feed consumed that is measured, but the amount of feed used up. Due to the fact that the feeder is not set up properly, the difference between these indicators can reach an average of 10-30%. In this case, improved feed conversion can be achieved by properly adjusting the feeders.
Next, let’s look at the reasons that affect conversion
Technologists identify dozens of factors that affect feed conversion by reducing or increasing it:
- selection. Specialized meat breeds are designed to produce a large amount of meat, showing an average daily growth rate of 700 g per day;
- environmental factors(ambient and room temperature, humidity, air velocity);
- technological factors(density of animals in the machine, the number and size of feeders, regrouping);
- physiological factors(health status, age, sex);
- feed factors (quality and quantity of compound feed, balanced diet, availability of unwanted additives (rancid components, mycotoxins),
- type of feed (granular or non-granular), organoleptic characteristics of feed (presence of flavors, or unpleasant odors), access to water).
What is the impact of feed conversion?
Consumption of feed per unit of output is an indicator of livestock efficiency. Feed conversion and feed cost are taken into account for the calculation of profitability. That is, the less feed you spend to get 1 kg of yield, the higher the economic efficiency of pig farming is. The situation is similar with other livestock industries.