Vathana Sann, Loan Chhum Phith:
The Effect of Replacing Fresh Water Spinach with Basal Diet on Performance of Fattening Pigs in Cambodia


1Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, Institute for Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition, Germany
2Royal University of Agriculture, Faculty of Animal Science and Veterinary Medicine, Cambodia

Where water supply is adequate or there is supplementary irrigation, water plants can be highly productive sources of protein-rich biomass and are ideal complements for fibre-free basal diets in pig and poultry feeding systems. Fresh water plant is ideally rich in water content and vitamin and low anti-nutritional factors. In pig feeding system among farmers, water spinach, an important water plant, is a major source of fresh vegetable supplementary. The objective of this paper is to evaluate the effect of replacing graded level of fresh water spinach (Ipomoeae aquatica F.) with basal diet on performance of fattening pigs in Cambodia. 36 castrated pigs with 32.90kg in initial body weight were assigned into a completely randomised design with 4 treatments and 3 replications. During 12 weeks of experiment pigs in group A, the control group, receive a balanced diet of 14% protein and 11.57 metabolisable energy whereas those in B, C and D received 10%, 20% and 30% of fresh water spinach replaced with the basal diet. At the end of the experiment, body weight of pigs in group B was 85.03kg following by A (81.43kg), C (77.50kg) and D (70.50kg) (p < 0.05). Daily dry matter intake of pigs in group B were 2.02kg higher than A (2.02kg), C (1.96kg) and D (1.61kg) significantly. The average feed conversion ratios of the experimental groups were 3.5, 3.8, 3.7 and 3.6 of A, B, C and D respectively without significant difference. Occurrences of greenish and mud manure were found in pigs of the last group which 30% of vegetable was used to replace basal feed. Replacing of fresh water spinach can optimally replace the basal diet not more than 20% which in return bringing a high benefit. However, attention must be paid to avoid the contamination of water-born disease contaminated to animal via undesirable flora found in the plant.

Keywords: Fattening pig, integrated farming system, water spinach


Contact Address: Vathana Sann, Georg-August-Universität Göttingen, Institute for Animal Physiology and Animal NutritionKellnerweg 6, 37077 Göttingen, Germany, e-mail:
Andreas Deininger, September 2004