2004 Volume 51 Issue 4 Pages 363-367
Reducing malodor emissions from the feces of animals is one of the great concerns in the animal industry. A range of indigestible oligosaccharides has been shown to alleviate fecal odor in non-ruminant animals. Dietary supplementation with lactosucrose decreased the cecal concentration of ammonia and phenols in chickens. The number of cecal bifidobacteria was increased, while that of clostridia was decreased. Dietary lactulose also decreased fecal ammonia, propionic acid and hydrogen sulfide in pigs. In ruminant animals, lactosucrose was broken down by rumen microbes, but some oligosaccharides, including lactitol and galactocylmaltose, tended to be more resistant to ruminal fermentation. During the intake of these oligosugars by cattle, fecal ammonia, indole and skatole were decreased, and bifidobacteria and eubacteria were increased. These effects were also shown when sarsaponin was used as a feed supplement. Recently, attention has been focused on ruminal methane emissions because of their effect on global warming. Many kinds of ruminal methane inhibitors are usually volatile and liquid compounds, and have a pungent odor. To overcome these problems, cyclodextrin (CD) has been used by forming an inclusion complexes. Several CD-complexes, including horseradish, iodopropane, medium chain fatty acids and diallylmaleate, were prepared, and it was shown that the dietary addition of these complexes offers the potential to inhibit ruminal methane production. A decrease in methane emissions by these chemicals will reduce the contribution of ruminants to the global methane volume.