Researchers showed that supplementing pigs with L-arginine can improve meat quality parameters.
This is according to a new paper: Effects of dietary L-arginine on growth performance, nutrient digestibility, gas emission, and meat quality in finishing pigs, from the Dankook University, published in Animal Feed Science and Technology.
For the study, a total of 120 crossbred [(Landrace × Yorkshire) × Duroc] pigs with an average initial body weight (BW) of 53.80 ± 1.86 kg were used in this 10-week feeding trial. The pigs were randomly allotted to 1 of 3 dietary treatments (5 pigs/pen and 8 replicates/treatment) in a randomized complete block design according to their sex (2 gilts and 3 barrows) and BW.
Dietary treatments included:
The researchers showed that L-arginine did not affect pig growth performance, nutrient digestibility, or gas emission. However, dietary L-arginine supplementation linearly increased (P < 0.05) muscle marbling score, while linearly decreasing (P < 0.05) cooking loss and drip loss of pork muscle. Collectively, results of current study indicate that supplementation with 1.0 g/kg L-arginine improved meat quality without any significant effect on growth performance in finishing pigs.