Optimisation of nutrient use to maximise profitability and minimise nitrogen excretion in pig meat production systems

P. C H Morel, G. R. Wood

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference proceeding contribution

    6 Citations (Scopus)

    Abstract

    Reduction of environmental mineral pollution, while maintaining profitability, is one of the major challenges faced by the pig industry today. This paper describes a computer-based growth simulation study undertaken to demonstrate how economic profitability can be maintained whilst the environmental effects associated with nitrogen wastes are minimised. For this purpose, a computer program linking a linear program, a stochastic pig growth model and a genetic algorithm (GA) was developed. The objective function to be maximised by the GA is the weighted difference of gross margin and nitrogen excretion cost. Simulations were conducted to investigate how different pig genotypes (fat, normal, lean) and different relative economic weighting of gross margin (1) and nitrogen excretion (0, 1, 5, 10, 20, 40, 80 or 120) affect the nitrogen excretion and profitability under practical or GA optimised feeding strategies in Switzerland. In all the cases investigated, nitrogen excretion is reduced and profitability increased when the pigs are from a leaner genotype. Across all genotypes a 45% reduction in nitrogen excretion can be achieved with only a 3.5% drop in profitability when diets designed to maximise profitability and minimise nitrogen excretion are fed. The maximal nitrogen retentions observed were 44.9%, 52.6% and 57% for the fat, normal and lean genotypes respectively. It is concluded that a more sustainable pork meat production system can be achieved by using better genotypes and optimising the diet composition.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationIII International Symposium on Applications of Modelling as an Innovative Technology in the Agri-Food Chain; MODEL-IT
    EditorsM.L.A.T.M. Hertog, B.M. Nicolaï
    Place of PublicationLeuven
    PublisherInternational Society for Horticultural Science
    Pages269-275
    Number of pages7
    Volume674
    ISBN (Print)9789066055186
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2005
    EventIII International Symposium on Applications of Modelling as an Innovative Technology in the Agri-Food Chain - 2005 - Leuven, Belgium
    Duration: 29 May 20052 Jun 2005

    Publication series

    NameActa Horticulturae
    Volume674
    ISSN (Print)05677572

    Conference

    ConferenceIII International Symposium on Applications of Modelling as an Innovative Technology in the Agri-Food Chain - 2005
    CountryBelgium
    CityLeuven
    Period29/05/052/06/05

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  • Cite this

    Morel, P. C. H., & Wood, G. R. (2005). Optimisation of nutrient use to maximise profitability and minimise nitrogen excretion in pig meat production systems. In M. L. A. T. M. Hertog, & B. M. Nicolaï (Eds.), III International Symposium on Applications of Modelling as an Innovative Technology in the Agri-Food Chain; MODEL-IT (Vol. 674, pp. 269-275). (Acta Horticulturae; Vol. 674). Leuven: International Society for Horticultural Science. https://doi.org/10.17660/ActaHortic.2005.674.31