Will Field Peas Replace Soybean Meal in Western Canada?

Ron Bazylo, Swine Specialist

The Western Canadian livestock industry relies heavily on imported protein supplements to provide the high quality protein required for optimum productivity. Soybean meal ranks as the most widely used source of supplementary protein for swine feeding and has become the standard against which all other protein sources are evaluated. Unfortunately, at times, the price of soybean meal and increasing transportation costs will make the importation of soybean meal less attractive. Therefore, it is important that domestic sources of supplementary protein be developed for use in swine diets. The increased acreage of field peas has led to the availability of a feed ingredient with considerable potential to replace soybean meal in diets for all classes of swine.

There is an abundance of research supporting the fact that peas and combinations of peas and canola meal can successfully replace soybean meal in the diets of market pigs and breeding stock.

One such trial carried out by the Alberta Pork Research Centre backs these results. Peacan meal (2 parts peas to 1 part canola meal) replaced 0, 33, 66 and 100% of the soybean meal in the trial. Results are shown in Table 1. The diets were balanced for DE and available lysine. Carcass data showed no significant differences.

Table 1. Effect of Level of Peacan Meal on Performance (20-110 kg Pigs)

% Supplemental Protein from Peacan Meal

0 33 66 100
ADG (g) 895 855 909 899
Feed:Gain 3.15 3.08 3.07 3.09

Since there is no difference in pig performance, prices of the ingredients should determine if and when peas, canola meal or peacan should be used. To determine if you should be using these ingredients, contact your nearest swine specialist to compare ration costs using difference ingredients.