Weaned pigs exhibit an aversion to hard pellets thus reducing feed intake. Sometimes producers may even moisten feed by hand to create a product that is more aromatic and softer to increase intake.

An award-winning innovative soft, moist complete pig feed called Healthy Edge™ Pig Starter for the older weaned pig (12-15 lb), is now available. This product’s unique soft granule form entices young pigs to eat quicker after weaning than do the traditional small hard pellets. 

Research data at LongView Animal Nutrition Center, consisting of over 400 pigs, shows that feeding pigs Healthy Edge™ Pig Starter improves average daily feed intake (26%) and average daily gain (8.2%) during the first 5 days after weaning when compared to the traditional pelleted pig starters; leading to 1.5 pound heavier pigs at the end of the nursery. These data were confirmed by trials conducted at the University of Arkansas and in the field. 

Feeding pigs Healthy Edge™ Pig Starter during the first 5 days after weaning at the University of Arkansas resulted in pigs eating 26.3% more and gaining 41.5% faster when compared to traditional pellets leading to 2.0 pound heavier pigs at the end of the nursery. Also, field studies showed that pigs gained 15.6% more when receiving Healthy Edge™ Pig Starter during the first 4-5 days after weaning when compared to the harder pelleted feed. 

Not only does Healthy Edge™ Pig Starter get pigs eating more and gaining better, it also supports intestinal health and immunity via specialized ingredients such as botanicals and organic acids.  Research data from the University of Arkansas shows that pigs fed Healthy Edge™ Pig Starter for the first 5 days after weaning have more goblet cells per villi (that secrete acidic mucin) in their large intestine at d 5 after weaning. These acidic mucins are important for gel formation, and, thus, for maintenance of the protective layer on the mucosal surface of the intestine to defend the pig against enteric pathogens.  Therefore, feeding pigs soft-moist Healthy Edge™ Pig Starter maximizes early feed intake; leading to heavier, healthier pigs. 

Field Feedback on Healthy Edge™ Pig Starter:

Kevin Whitaker, pork production specialist for Hull Cooperative Association (Hull, IA), said, “We’re using the product when weaned pigs come into the wean-to-finish barn. Healthy Edge™ Pig Starter is placed on the mats and in the bottom of the feeder. The average weight of the pigs coming into the barn is around the 12 pound range. The pigs take to the feed well and are growing well.  Also, Healthy Edge™ Pig Starter stays on the mats better than regular pellets.”

Curt Cooper, sales and farm consultant for Brunlett Elevator (Gowrie, IA), said, “Getting pigs to eat is 90% of the battle in the nursery!  Producers are feeding Healthy Edge™ Pig Starter to all pigs (small and large) to get them eating quicker after weaning and gaining weight. The smaller pigs (~10 lbs) get more of the product than larger pigs. Also, we use Healthy Edge™ Pig Starter on fall-behind pigs to get them eating and gaining weight.”

For further information, please see your local feed sales representative at a Land O’Lakes Feed Co-op or Purina Mills Dealer.Visit us online at www.LOLFeed.com, www.PurinaMills.com, www.PurinaPigStarters.com, www.GelResearch.com

Copyright © 2008 Land O’Lakes Purina Feed LLC.  All rights reserved.  Healthy Edge is a registered trademark of Land O’Lakes Purina Feed LLC.