Weaning involves an abrupt switch from milk to solid feed. The supply of nutrients changes radically. Carbohydrates replace fat as the main energy source, and there is a shift from animal to vegetable protein. Piglets often have difficulty coping with this sudden switch because it takes time for the enzyme production in their digestive system to adapt to the new situation. In its native form, the starch is difficult to digest in the small intestine. A large amount of undigested starch passes into the large intestine where the intestinal bacteria cause explosive fermentation.
For better starch utilisation, the starch needs to be mechanically or thermally gelatinised.
The thermal treatment also affects the viscosity of the mass in the stomach and the intestine and therefore nutrient intake.
For thermal gelatinisation of starch in cereals, Meneba has developed the PrescoÃ’process. This process has positive benefits over other techniques such as steam flaking, micronising, expanding and extruding. In vitro tests, performed at the independent research centre Schothorst Feed Research, clearly showed these positive benefits.
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