FEEDING VALUE OF CASHEWNUT TESTA FOR BROILER CHICKENS
Keywords:Cashewnut testa, broiler, performance
This study was conducted to investigate the response of broiler chickens to diets containing cashewnut testa (CNT). Two hundred and four (204) day-old unsexed Arboracre broiler chicks were randomly allotted to four dietary treatment consisting of three replicates of seventeen chicks each. The treatments consists of a control and three other diets with CNT included at 5, 10, and 15% as a substitute for wheat offal in the control diet. Cashewnut testa had 1.5, 20.0, 54.0, 17.0, 2.0, and 94.5% crude protein (CP), crude fibre (CF), nitrogen free extract (NFE), ether extract (EE), ash and dry matter (DM), respectively. Weight gain was highest (P < 0.05) in birds fed 5% CNT diet (35.24g) while the lowest and feed: gain ratio values. The CP retention and digestible EE, CF, NFE, ash, DM and total digestible nutrient were not significantly (P <0.05) affected by CNT in the diets. The serum metabolites were significantly (P < 0.05) affected by the levels of CNT in the diets. Total serum protein increased (P < 0.05) with increasing level of CNT in the diets. Among the carcass parameters measured, breast, neck and back weight were highest (P < 0.05) for 5%CNT diet while abdominal fat, small intestine and large intestine weight increased (P < 0.05) with increasing levels of CNT in the diets. No significant effect (P > 0.05) in juiciness, flavor intensity, tenderness and off flavor was recorded among the meat samples from the broiler fed the diets. Meat lipid and ash increased (P < 0.05) in the CNT diets. Cost of feed per kg decreased while cost of feed per kg live weight gain increased (P < 0.05) with increasing level of CNT in the diets. It was concluded that 5% CNT could replace wheat offal in broiler diets.