Effect of Graded Substitution of Soybean Meal by Hermetia illucens Larvae Meal on Animal Performance, Apparent Ileal Digestibility, Gut Histology and Microbial Metabolites of Broilers

Kristina Hartinger, Julia Greinix, Nathalie Thaler, Marco Antonio Ebbing, Nadia Yacoubi, Karl Schedle, Martin Gierus
2021 Animals  
The usage of insects as an alternative protein source for broiler feeds may help to reduce the dependency on soybean meal (SBM) imports. Therefore, the present study aimed to evaluate the replacement of 15 (SL15) or 30% (SL30) of crude protein (CP) from SBM with Hermetia illucens (HI) defatted larvae meal regarding broiler performance, carcass traits, apparent ileal digestibility, intestinal morphology, and microbial metabolites. Concerning the performance, body weight was similar for the
more » ... milar for the control (CON) and SL15, but lower for SL30 during all feeding phases. In addition, average daily feed intake was higher in SL15 and SL30 compared to CON in the starter phase, but this effect vanished during grower and finisher phase. The apparent ileal digestibility decreased for CP and some amino acids with increasing HI larvae meal in the diet. No or marginal alterations were observed for the intestinal morphometry as well as cecal microbial metabolites. In conclusion, partial replacement of 15% SBM CP with HI larvae meal in broiler diets without impairing animal performance or health seems possible. The growth suppression with 30% CP substitution may be caused by reduced apparent ileal digestibility but could not be clearly associated with adverse effects of hindgut fermentation or altered gut morphology.
doi:10.3390/ani11061628 pmid:34073019 fatcat:xj6fcefk5rhqpcnnmmeatjg3l4