and FROSTCOATS: A Winning Combination
in the Fight Against Post-Weaning Diarrhea
The economic losses attributed to
intestinal disease are staggering. E. coli poses one of the
greatest threats to early-weaned pig health. Diarrhea accounts for
a substantial percentage of post-weaning pig mortality, with the
leading cause of diarrhea disease reportedly being K88 strain of
enterotoxigenic E. coli.1 Protecting the young pig and limiting
exposure to E. coli requires a high degree of sanitation
and implementation of control/preventative strategies. An
infectious E. coli battle can be costly and long-term.
Given the potential impact on swine production, numerous dietary
tactics are utilized in the battle to prevent diarrhea in young
pigs. Such strategies include antibiotics, spray-dried plasma
proteins, pro- and prebiotics, organic acids, zinc and copper
salts, and more recently the inclusion of egg yolk antibodies
obtained from laying hens hyperimmunized with specific bacterial
fimbrial antigens, such as antigens for E. coli strain K88. Egg
yolk antibodies are commonly called hyperimmunized egg (HIE).
University research has shown young pigs are not as susceptible to
the effects of an E. coli (K88) challenge when consuming HIE
antibodies.2 Given concerns associated with antibiotic usage and
environmental impact from excess zinc and copper, use of HIE in
post-weaning diets offers producers another option in the fight
against post-weaning diarrhea.
Many producers choose to use pelleted feed for early-weaned pigs
due to performance advantages and given the fact that nutrient
needs are best supplied by using numerous specialty ingredients,
such as plasma proteins, milk products, fish meal, and modified
carbohydrates that would require more management in terms of
acquisition, inventory, and mixing when used in grind and mix
rations. The inclusion of HIE in post-weaning diets, especially
for early-weaned pigs, has proven beneficial.2 However, since HIE
is heat-sensitive, the antibodies can be destroyed when included
in a typical pelleted prestarter feed.
The patented FROSTCOATS® process is ideally suited for supplying
HIE to weaned pigs. Like other heat-sensitive ingredients, HIE can
be included in the FROSTCOATS post-pelleting, making it possible
to deliver the E. coli hyperimmunized egg antibody in a pelleted
product that pigs readily consume. The production of FROSTCOATS is
a two-step process. First, a base pellet is produced utilizing a
typical pelleting process. Then, at room temperature conditions,
the coating which contains heat-sensitive ingredients, such as HIE,
are applied to the outside of the base pellet. The result is a
highly nutritious, very palatable pelleted feed that is preferred
by young pigs.
ADM swine researchers evaluated HIE heat stability in pelleted
feed products by measuring how much egg antibody (immunoglobulin
Y) survived the heat from the regular pelleting process. Three
pelleted feeds containing HIE were tested - one MOMENTUM® 10-15
product and two MOMENTUM FROSTCOATS 5-10 products. Meal samples
which were not exposed to high temperature were taken for all
three products prior to pelleting. HIE was added to the meal prior
to pelleting for the MOMENTUM 10-15 product and the first
FROSTCOATS 5-10 product.
For the second FROSTCOATS 5-10 product, HIE was
added to the coating mixture and applied to the outside of the
base pellet at room temperature; thus, avoiding exposure to high
pelleting temperature. In essence, HIE was exposed to high
temperature associated with the pelleting process for the first
two pellet products, but not for the third pellet product. Temperature exposure for HIE with the first two pelleted
products were 165°F and 168°F, respectively. The temperature at
which HIE was exposed with the third product was approximately
70°F (room temperature). Antibody titer (IgY) for each meal and
pellet sample was measured using enzyme-linked immunosorbent
assays (ELISA) and percentage of HIE survival was calculated.
Results clearly demonstrated that the regular pelleting process
destroyed most of the HIE - 38.1% survived in the first pellet
product and 21.3% survived in the second pellet product.
Conversely, HIE survival rate was 95.3% for the third pellet
product (HIE applied in the coating). The high survival rate
clearly demonstrated the FROSTCOATS technology was efficacious at
protecting HIE antibodies.
The usage of HIE should span at least 10 days. Once pigs have
consumed recommended amounts of MOMENTUM FROSTCOATS with HIE, pigs
should be transitioned to another diet that contains HIE until
pigs have consumed HIE for at least 10 days. If a meal diet will
be used, producers can utilize HIE Pig Pak. Depending on
susceptibility to E. coli and facility conditions, it may be
advantageous to continue HIE supplementation for another 10 or
more days. Warning: If an oral E. coli vaccine is being used,
request that the herd veterinarian contact the manufacture of the
vaccine to check on potential HIE interference with the vaccine.
Another weapon in the arsenal against diarrhea in young pigs is
the use of HIE antibodies in weaned pig diets. Only the patented
FROSTCOATS technology has been shown to enable the incorporation
of heat-sensitive ingredients such as HIE into pelleted feeds
without being destroyed. In addition, the superiority in
performance of young pigs fed MOMENTUM FROSTCOATS pelleted feed
versus conventional pelleted products has been well established.
Adding HIE to MOMENTUM FROSTCOATS gives producers another edge in
getting newly weaned pigs off to a fast, healthy start.
1 J. Animal Sci. 2003. 81:1790-1798.
2 J. Animal Sci. 2003. 81:1781-1789.