Animal Husbandry Mimeograph October, 1957
Series No. 58-2
PRELIMINARY OBSERVATIONS ON HESPERIDIN, A CITRUS BIOFLAVONOID,
AS A SUPPLEMENTAL FEED INGREDIENT FOR
WEANLING PIGS FED ON CONCRETE'
H. D. Wallace, G. M. Edwards,
G. E. Combs, Jr. and C. E. Haines2
In animal nutrition research we are constantly seeking nutritive materials
which improve the efficiency of livestock production. Hesperidin, a bloflavonoid,
found in the edible portion of oranges seemed to warrant such investigation in view
of the many beneficial effects which have been reported in human experiments. There
are several bioflavonoids which appear to have a physiological effect in human nutri-
tion that parallels that of a vitamin. Bioflavonoids are usually found in close
association with ascorbic acid, yet evidence is still lacking to confirm their re-
quirement as an essential nutrient. Recent investigations have also suggested the
possibility of a pharmacological action rather than that of a vitamin.
This study was undertaken to determine if crude hesperidin (hesperidin complex),
when added to a ration complete in all known essentials for the weanling pig, would
increase rate of gain or improve feeding efficiency.
Forty weanling pigs of purebred Duroc and crossbred breeding were divided into
four similar lots of ten pigs each according to weight, breed, and previous treat-
ment. Each lot was fed in a concrete pen which provided about 15 square feet of
floor space per pig. The pens were cleaned and hosed out daily. Feeding was by
self feeder and fresh drinking water was kept in front of the animals at all times.
The experiment began on April 20, 1957 and was terminated on July 20, 1957, after a
feeding period of 91 days. The composition of the control ration and the dietary
treatments were as follows:
Composition of Control Ration
,.-Ground yellow corn 76.3 VRA
Soybean oil meal 19.0
Vitamin premixO 2.0 X,! :\
Ground limestone 1.0
Steamed bone meal I.0 !
Iodized salt 0.5
Trace minerals 0.1
Antibiotic supplements 01
IThe hesperidin was supplied through the courtesy of Dr. J. W. Kesterson of the
Citrus Experiment Station, Lake Alfred, Florida.
2Wallace, Associate Animal Husbandman; Edwards, Research Assistant; Combs,
Assistant Animal Husbandman; and Haines, Research Assistant, Department of Animal
Husbandry and Nutrition. The assistance of W. E. Collins and L. S. Taylor, swine
herdsmen, is gratefully acknowledged.
aThe vitamin premix was composed of:
Vitamin A (20,000 I.U./gm.) 10.00 gm.
Vitamin D2 (9,000 i.U./gm.) 2.20 gm.
Vitamin E (44 I.U./gm.) 9.10 gm.
Vitamin BI2 (9 g./lb.--Pfizer) 50.00 gm.
Vitamin Supplement No. 2--Pfizer 90.80 gm.
Parvo (3% Folic Acid) 1.70 gm.
Thiamine .10 gm.
Pyridoxine .06 gm.
Ground yellow corn 744.04 gm.
or 2 Ibs.
bThe trace mineral mixture consisted of:
Manganese sulfate 21.53
Ferrous sulfate 33.21
Copper sulfate 1.79
Cobalt sulfate 0.47
Zinc sulfate 6.31
Potassium sulfate 1.58
CAurofac 10-A American Cyanamid, Pearl River, New York.
Lot I -- Control ration.
Lot 2 -- Control ration + 200 gm. of hesperidin complex per ton of feed.
Lot 3 -- Control ration.
Lot 4 -- Control ration + 200 gm. of hesperidin complex per ton of feed.
Results and Discussion
Results of the feeding trial are summarized in Tables I and 2. During the first
four weeks of the experiment the pigs in Lots I and 2 (replicate I) gained at approxi-
mately the same rate. However, the hesperidIn supplemented pigs (Lot 2) ate consid-
erably more feed and converted it to gains less efficiently than the control pigs
(Lot I). However, in replicate 2 results were somewhat different. The supplemented
pigs (Lot 4) gained 1.52 pounds per day as compared to 1.37 pounds per day for the
controls (Lot 3). Again the hesperidin supplemented pigs consumed more feed but
converted it to gains somewhat less efficiently than did the control pigs.
For the entire experimental period of 91 days the unsupplemented and supplemented
pigs of replicate I performed much the same. There were no marked differences in
gains, feed intake, or feed conversion. The differences that existed in replicate 2
at four weeks were still apparent at the end of the trial, but the margin of difference
Table I. The Supplemental Value of Hesperidin for Weanling Pigs Fed in Dry LotI
Comparison (Replicate I) (Replicate 2)
Control Hesperidin Control Hesperidin
Lot Number I 2 3 4
Number of Pigs 10 10 10 10
Av. Initial Wt., Lbs. 44.7 44.4 44.5 44.4
Av. Daily Gain, Lbs. (Ist 4 Weeks) 1.46 1.47 1.37 1.52
Av. Daily Feed Intake, Lbs. (Ist 4 Weeks) 3.83 4.01 3.67 3.95
Feed/Lb. Gain, Lbs. (Ist 4 Weeks) 2.52 2.65 2.47 2.53 t
Av. Final Wt., Lbs. 208.0 205.9 187.8 197.6
Av. Daily Gain, Lbs. (Entire Period) 1.79 1.77 1.57 1.68
Av. Daily Feed Intake, Lbs. (Entire Period) 6.03 6.07 5.58 5.78
Feed/Lb. Gain, Lbs. (Entire Period) 3.36 3.42 3.54 3.44
Total Days on Test 91 91 91 91
IThe pigs in Lots I and 2 were cooled with a fine mist spray during the experiment while pigs
in Lots 3 and 4 were not cooled. This undoubtedly accounts for the better performance of the first
replicate (Lots I and 2) as compared to the second replicate (Lots 3 and 4).
Table 2. The Supplemental Value of Hesperidin
for Weanling Pigs Fed in Dry Lot (Combined Replicates)
Lot Numbers I and 3 2 and 4
Number of Pigs 20 20
Av. Initial Wt., Lbs. 44.6 44.4
Av. Daily Gain, Lbs. (1st 4 Weeks) 1.41 1.49
Av. Daily Feed Intake, Lbs. (1st 4 Weeks) 3.75 3.98
Feed/Lb. Gain, Lbs. (Ist 4 Weeks) 2.49 2.59
Av. Final Wt., Lbs. 197.9 201.8
Av. Daily Gain, Lbs. (Entire Period) 1.68 1.73
Av. Daily Feed Intake, Lbs. (Entire Period) 5.81 5.93
Feed/Lb. Gain, Lbs. (Entire Period) 3.45 3.43
Total Days on Test 91 91
had become less. The hesperidin supplemented group (Lot 4) gained 0.11 pound per
day faster, ate 0.2 pound more feed per day, and required 0.1 pound less feed per
pound of gain.
There is no clear explanation for the difference in performance of pigs between
the two replicates. Pigs In replicate I were cooled with a fine mist spray during
the warm periods of the day, whereas pigs in replicate 2 were not subjected to
cooling. Thus, the pigs in replicate 2 were subjected to the stress of higher envi-
ronmental temperatures. This may have been a factor which influenced the results.
The performance of the combined replicates is presented in Table 2. An analyses
of the data indicated that the differences between treatments in average daily gains,
feed consumption, and feed required per unit of gain were not statistically signifi-
cant at the end of the first four weeks, nor for the entire feeding period of 91 days.
An experiment, involving forty weanling pigs, has been conducted to determine
the supplemental value of hesperidin, a citrus bioflavonoid, to a well fortified
corn-soybean oil meal type ration fed in dry lot.
A statistical analyses of the data Indicated that the hesperidin supplementa-
tion produced no significant response in pig performance. However, variations in
response were observed between replicates and this might well indicate a need for
further testing of the material under varying conditions, as well as a study of
additional levels of supplementation.