organizing committee  

Michael E.R. Dugan*, Jennifer L. Aalhus and John K.G. Kramer
Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada

The driving force behind most CLA research in swine has been related to potential improvements in animal production. Early work using rodent models indicated feeding CLA could potentially reduce body fat, increase lean, increase growth rate and/or improve feed conversion efficiency. Producer backed funding organizations were, therefore, very receptive to proposals to extend this research to pigs and a number of studies have now been completed world-wide. In general, improvements in body composition have been found, but evidence indicating CLA improves growth rate or feed conversion has been limited. Inclusion of CLA into pig diets has, however, been shown to increase muscle marbling fat and fat hardness and both of these have potential to increase carcass value. Currently, BASF has the international marketing licence to include CLA in animal feeds, but to date, this practice has not been approved in Canada or the USA. If and when approval is granted, the next step in reaching CLAís economic potential would be to seek approval for claiming a CLA enrichment in pork and pork products. Given the ability of swine to accumulate relatively high levels of CLA in their tissues, pork and pork products might then become an important vehicle for delivery of physiologically significant levels of CLA to consumers. Dr. Duganís research has been supported by the Alberta Pork Producers Development Corporation, the Canada Alberta Hog Industry Development Fund, Conlinco Inc. and the AAFC Matching Investment Initiative.

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