International Journal of
Livestock Production

  • Abbreviation: Int. J. Livest. Prod.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-2448
  • DOI: 10.5897/IJLP
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 264

Full Length Research Paper

Effect of dietary hemp seed cake on the performance of commercial laying hens

Rajasekhar Kasula
  • Rajasekhar Kasula
  • Wenger Animal Nutrient and Technology Innovation Center, The Wenger Group, 101 West Harrisburg Ave, Rheems, PA 17570, USA.
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Fausto Solis
  • Fausto Solis
  • Wenger Animal Nutrient and Technology Innovation Center, The Wenger Group, 101 West Harrisburg Ave, Rheems, PA 17570, USA.
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Byron Shaffer
  • Byron Shaffer
  • Kreider Farms, 1145 Colebrook Rd, Mount Joy, PA 17552, USA.
  • Google Scholar
Frank Connett
  • Frank Connett
  • Kreider Farms, 1145 Colebrook Rd, Mount Joy, PA 17552, USA.
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Chris Barrett
  • Chris Barrett
  • Kreider Farms, 1145 Colebrook Rd, Mount Joy, PA 17552, USA.
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Rodney Cocker
  • Rodney Cocker
  • Kreider Farms, 1145 Colebrook Rd, Mount Joy, PA 17552, USA.
  • Google Scholar
Eric Willinghan
  • Eric Willinghan
  • Winfield Veterinary Consulting, Inc.,Lake Worth, Florida, USA.
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  •  Received: 15 October 2020
  •  Accepted: 30 December 2020
  •  Published: 28 February 2021

Abstract

The cultivation of hemp was prohibited due to its high content of the psychoactive substance Δ-9 tetrahydrocannabinol (THC). Regulatory changes from several countries allow the cultivation of hemp that permits plants and plant parts with less than 0.3% Δ-9 THC. The concern of the levels of THC still remains; therefore, testing hemp seed cake (HSC) contributes new information about the effect of this ingredient on livestock. The objective of this study was to evaluate the effect of HSC on feed intake, body weight (BW), egg production, eggs per hen housed (EHH), feed conversion ratio (FCR), and livability of laying hens. Eight hundred 30-week old laying hens were randomly distributed and fed four treatments for 19 weeks, no HSC (C0), 10% (H10), 20% (H20) and 30% (H30) of HSC replicated 8 times with 25 hens per replicate. Feed intake was not affected by the HSC supplementation. BWs were reduced across all treatments with significant lower impact on the HSC treatments, egg production, EHH and FCR were not consistently affected by HSC supplementation. The livability was within the normal range for the breed. The results of this study confirm that HSC supplementation in feed does not affect the performance of laying hens.

Key words: Hemp, hemp seed cake (HSC), performance, tetrahydrocannabinol, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), safety. 

Abbreviation

THC, Tetrahydrocannabinol; Δ, delta symbol; BW, body weight; HSC, hemp seed cake; H0, no hemp seed cake; H10, 10% hemp seed cake; H20, 20% hemp seed cake; H30,      30% hemp seed cake; EHH, eggs per hen housed; FCR, feed conversion ratio; FAO, Food and Agriculture Organization; LA, Linoleic acid; ALA, α-linolenic acid; PUFA, polyunsaturated fatty acids; USDA, United States Department of Agriculture; NRC, National Research Council; EFSA, European Food Safety Authority; EPA, Eicosapentaenoic acid; DHA, Docosahexaenoic acid.