Feed conversion and performance in sows and piglets

Successful pig production depends on many factors: a consistently high feed intake right from the start, best feed conversion, the development and maintenance of a stable digestive system, high milk quality and quantity of the lactating sow, and uniformity of the litter - all these are challenges to overcome for profitable piglet production.


To meet these challenges successfully, it needs a high reproductive performance of the sow, a high level of piglet vitality and uniform growth with high feed efficiency.

Pig(let) production faces many challenges

However, genetic advances in piglet production not only lead to larger litter sizes, but also to new challenges: larger litter sizes mean reduced piglets’ weights. Piglets with a lower birth weight often have a reduced survival rate, poor feed conversion and weight gain, which increases days to slaughter. In addition, there are high weight losses and decreased milk production due to reduced feed intake of sows during the lactation period. This not only impairs the current litter performance – but also future reproductive performance such as fertility, litter size and farrowing rate. 

Did you know?

Every piglet lost before weaning is a loss of income per sow and every extra day until the pig is marketed increases production costs. In addition, lack of uniformity of body weight in the litters makes weaning more difficult and ultimately it will impact on the management of the pigs at later stages and also increases losses.

Litter performance begins in the gut

An optimal start at weaning is the basis for a successful pig production. Especially a high feed intake early on, best feed conversion and an optimal daily gain is crucial in order to support the development of healthy piglets. Thus, adequate growth performance and vitality of piglets right from the start is only possible with high-quality sow milk, a high feed palatability and optimal digestion. In order for the sow and piglets to be able to absorb and use the nutrients from feed and milk optimally, however, it is necessary to maintain a healthy intestinal tract.

Challenges & Solutions Swine

Interested in other Challenges & Solutions?

Improve feed conversion in sows and piglets naturally:

Fresta® F – rely on sow and piglet performance right from the start

  • Improves feed intake and nutrient utilization, thus contributing to enhanced piglet uniformity and milk quality in sows
  • Supports growth performance in piglets and reduces body weight loss of sows during lactation
  • Enhances feed conversion in piglets and contributes to higher profitability of pig production

Fresta® F is effective in overall swine production: Due to its special composition of selected phytogenic components, Fresta® F contributes to an optimized and profitable swine production. By increasing piglets’ feed intake and daily gain, Fresta® F supports their development and simultaneously improves feed conversion in piglets. Sows benefit from increased feed intake and milk production during lactation which ultimately improves litter performance.

Nature that works - proven scientifically

Scientific research has shown that Fresta® F reduces litter weight variability and helps the piglets to reach their full economical potential.

Fresta® F enhances feed intake in sows during lactation due to its aromatic composition of selected phytogenics.

Zootechnically proven efficiency in piglets

Delacon is proud of having developed this phytogenic feed additive for the special needs of piglets, since it is the first EU approved zootechnical feed additive. This means that highest independent authorities confirmed the improvements of Fresta® F in terms of growth rate of weaned piglets.

You want to increase the performance of your piglets and sows while reducing ammonia emissions?

High ammonia emissions in pig production is not only bad for the environment but can also affect the respiratory system of the animals in the stable. The aim should be to keep the ammonia emissions low for the animals. This may also have positive effects on the profitability of pig production.

Go one step further with Fresta® F Plus – the natural ammonia reducer in sows and piglets

Fresta® F Plus brings all the benefits provided by Fresta® F, with the additional effect of reduced ammonia emissions: The plus of a sophisticated formulation of saponins, positively contributing to the digestion of nitrogen-containing compounds, has shown a possible reduction of ammonia formation by 21%.***

*University trial with FRESTA® F in piglets on homogeneity parameters, Germany, S046

**Average data of 10 trials with FRESTA® F on feed intake in sows, F59, F77b, F79, F088, F098, F107, F142, F152, FF+10, S050

***Average data of 3 trials with FRESTA® F Plus on ammonia emissions, FF+ 11, FF+ 18, S035

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Kevin Adams
Sales Group Leader North America

Phone: +1 717 30 715 70

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