Pig International - July/August 2017 - 10

10 ❙ PigInternational

5 ways phytogenics improve
pig feed efficiency
Phytogenics are being used with increasing
frequency, but many users are still
uncertain on what constitutes
this additive and
its relation with
essential oils.
BY EFSTRATIA PAPANIKOU

1

What are these phytogenics?

Phytogenics are almost invariably compounds that belong to secondary plant metabolism. With that, we mean that plants use
these compounds for specific purposes. They do not
participate in the daily or primary plant metabolism,
such as that involving carbohydrate or protein synthesis, for example. Until some years ago, these secondary plant metabolism compounds were characterized
as biologically insignificant because scientists thought
they had no apparent function.
This is a situation similar to what we call "junk

DNA," which is basically DNA for which we currently
cannot identify its use. Likewise, dark matter makes
up 99 percent of the universe, and it is called dark only
because we cannot find out its use, purpose or even
consistency. Coming back to phytogenics, today we
can safely say that their role is pivotal in plant life, if
not for everyday function, at least for long-term survival against environmental threats.

2

Difference with essential oils

The history of phytogenics began with
extracts; oregano is a very fine example.
A truckload of fresh oregano leaves was
distilled, and the extract was collected, purified and
sold as oregano essential oil. The term essential oil is
a misnomer as it refers to the aroma or "essence" of
a plant and not to its essentiality in any specific way.
These kind of extracts, also known as ethereal oils or
just oil of a specific plant (oil of clove, for example),
are used in human medicine and aromatherapy.
Thus the term essential should not be confused with
"indispensable" but with having a specific aroma.
Another difference is that the original extracts were
a blend of various compounds, most likely more comwww.WATTAgNet.com ❙ July/August 2017

Eyewave | Dreamstime.com

Phytogenics are a family of additives
with some considerable history. In
fact, phytogenics have been around for
a couple of decades under various names: essential
oils, plant extracts, botanicals and now, phytogenics.
Although the basic compounds that constitute this
family of additives remain, in theory, unchanged, the
way these additives are manufactured and put together
has changed considerably. As such, it merits revisiting
this interesting additive, if only to catch up with the
latest developments and even to establish some basic
facts about them. After all, not much is known about
their role in plants, let alone in animals.


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Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pig International - July/August 2017

Pig International - July/August 2017
Contents
Pigs and Money
Industry Happenings
World pork production to grow at a slower rate
5 ways phytogenics improve pig feed efficiency
Methionine beyond protein synthesis in growing pigs
Understanding pseudorabies in pigs leads to prevention
6 fiber insights for formulating livestock feed
Salmonella control: Do organic acids solve the problem?
How lactic fermented feed benefits pig production
How to treat iron deficiency in neonatal pigs
Products
Marketplace
Advertisers’ Index
Pig International - July/August 2017 - Pig International - July/August 2017
Pig International - July/August 2017 - Cover2
Pig International - July/August 2017 - Contents
Pig International - July/August 2017 - Pigs and Money
Pig International - July/August 2017 - Industry Happenings
Pig International - July/August 2017 - World pork production to grow at a slower rate
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 5
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 6
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 7
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 8
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 9
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 5 ways phytogenics improve pig feed efficiency
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 11
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 12
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 13
Pig International - July/August 2017 - Methionine beyond protein synthesis in growing pigs
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 15
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 16
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 17
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 18
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 19
Pig International - July/August 2017 - Understanding pseudorabies in pigs leads to prevention
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 21
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 22
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 23
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 6 fiber insights for formulating livestock feed
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 25
Pig International - July/August 2017 - Salmonella control: Do organic acids solve the problem?
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 27
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 28
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 29
Pig International - July/August 2017 - How lactic fermented feed benefits pig production
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 31
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 32
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 33
Pig International - July/August 2017 - How to treat iron deficiency in neonatal pigs
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 35
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 36
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 37
Pig International - July/August 2017 - Products
Pig International - July/August 2017 - 39
Pig International - July/August 2017 - Advertisers’ Index
Pig International - July/August 2017 - Cover3
Pig International - July/August 2017 - Cover4
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