Broiler Vitamin Nutrition Guidelines
In a time of record feed prices, nutritionists and production managers continue to look for opportunities to lower growout costs. Even though their contribution seldom exceeds 1-2% of feed costs, vitamins are not immune to this cost-crunching scrutiny. Furthermore, in late 2017, an unparalleled drop in global vitamin supply resulted in sharply increased prices, and in some cases, outright shortages. Such events have placed pressure on vitamin fortification levels in broiler feeds. Marginal vitamin shortages can be more costly than acute deficiencies. Seemingly trivial insufficiencies can translate in nothing more than a slight drop in target weights, or 1-2 point increases in F/G, or egg production or shell quality that lingers below expectations. These are difficult to differentiate from management and housing issues, hatchery problems, chick quality, and the list goes on. At today’s feed prices, 1 point in feed conversion approximates to $2/ton feed.