In tropical and subtropical countries, livestock productivity may be affected by the availability of food resources and the high prevalence of gastrointestinal pathogenic nematodes. The classical method of control using anthelmintic drugs is becoming decreasingly efficient because of a generalised resistance of the gastrointestinal nematodes suppress (GIN) to most of the drugs. In small farms, protein-rich biomasses with significant amounts of condensed tannins (CT), which are known to have anthelminbtic properties, might be good candidates to produce nutraceuticals. This experiment was conducted to determine the feasibility of producing nutraceutical pellets from Manihot esculenta sp., Cajanus cajan and Leucaena leucocephala, considering the influence of agro-pedo-climatic conditions plant species and technological factors, such as drying and pelleting. The samples were harvested in two different agro-pedo-climatic zones and sundried under shelter (at 25 to 35°C) or in a ventilated oven (45°C) before pelleting. Chemical analysis on crude protein and condensed tannins were conducted. The chemical composition of the plants did not vary significantly with agro-pedo-climatic conditions. Sun-drying and oven-drying decreased the CT content of the plants. No effect of pelleting was recorded on crude protein and CT contents, except for C. cajan, for which a small decrease in CT content was observed. Protein-rich foliage types with CT contents above 50 g/kg of dry matter are potentially good candidates to produce nutraceutical pellets if they are dried using mild drying conditions, like sun-drying under shelter.
Key words: Condensed tannins, nutraceuticals, Biological variability; drying, pelleting processes.