Important update information

At EFG Software we strive continuously to improve the predictive accuracy of our Broiler Growth Model.  In the latest version, which is available now, we have incorporated new equations for breast meat yield and for some of the other important body components. These changes will affect the output of the Broiler Growth Model and the Broiler Nutrition Optimiser. The EFG Broiler Growth Model uses an important theory of food intake regulation leading to the prediction of growth in chemical terms. The conversion of this chemical growth into physical body components has always been a challenging area of modelling.  Firstly there are many such components which are of varying importance in difference production markets, secondly over the years there is continual genetic change in body composition at a given body weight and thirdly the components themselves are not rigorously defined depending in part on factory practices and on the conventions of different markets.

The approach used depends on the data available for model construction; in the early days of model development this was quite limiting. Over the years we have conducted a series of trials using a wide range of genotypes fed a range of dietary protein levels to obtain more accurate information about the allometric relationship between body protein and the different body parts.  This has involved measuring the weight of the different parts of the body at different stages of maturity and then determining the protein content of the entire carcass.  The work stretches back to 1995 when 18 Australian genotypes were evaluated, and includes data using the latest genotypes available in both South Africa and Europe. Much of this work has been published whilst some is still in the process of being published. After rigorous testing the results of this research have now been incorporated in the model.  We recognize a need for more information about genetic and breed differences in these equations but in this version of the model the yield of carcass parts will now be more accurately predicted than in previous versions.

Colin Fisher and Rob Gous

January 2016