Low crude protein diets supplemented with free amino acids in laying hens

January 28, 2022

Providing laying hens diets with a lower protein level and supplemented with free amino acids (AA) to meet the AA requirements can help reduce the use of soybean meal and protein of non-EU origin in layer diets.

Within the public private partnership Feed4Foodure, an experiment was performed with laying hens in which the effects were studied of reduction of the protein content of iso-energetic diets from 16.1 to 14, 13.5 and 12.0% on laying performance, feed margin, egg quality, N-excretion and carbon footprint.

It was concluded that reducing the crude protein content of the diet of laying hens from 16.1% to 14.7%, by reducing the soybean meal inclusion level and supplementation of free essential amino acids, resulted in a similar laying performance in hens aged between 39 and 51 weeks.

Further lowering of the dietary crude protein to 13.5% and 12.0% deteriorated the production performance.