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Med. Weter. 73 (2), 76-81, 2017

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Anna Woźniakowska, Wojciech Kozera, Krzysztof Karpiesiuk
Organic acids in piglet nutrition – a review
The risk of developing cross-resistance of pathogens to antibiotics led to a ban on antibiotics as growth promoters in animal feed in the European Union since January 2006. In recent decades, acidifiers have been widely used as potential alternatives to antibiotics in the nursery pigs’ diet to overcome weaning stresses, prevent intestinal disturbances with diarrhea and to improve growth performance. Organic acids can reduce the digesta pH value in the gastrointestinal tract (GIT), converting the inactive pepsinogen to active pepsin and increase the protein utilization. Acidifiers also promote beneficial microbial growth in the GIT and reduce infection from harmful microorganisms. Moreover, dietary inclusion of organic acids and their salts for weaning pigs can reduce intestinal epithelia damage, increase intestinal occludin expression and decrease small intestinal permeability, and improve immune indexes. In conclusion, dietary supplementation with acidifiers can decrease economic loss for pig producers.
Key words: acidifiers, organic acids, piglets’ performance, intestinal villus