When a bird is exposed to environmental or disease stressors, a stress hormone called corticosterone is released. The release of corticosterone alters how nutrients are utilized by the bird. During periods of stress, nutrients are re-allocated from growth toward minimizing the stress being experienced by the bird. When nutrients are siphoned away from growth in this way, performance can be negatively impacted.
Chromium supplementation has been shown to decrease the levels of corticosterone in the blood, thereby alleviating the negative effects of stress on growth and performance to allow the bird to reach its full genetic potential.1-4
Four separate university studies utilizing different genetic strains of birds, ages, body weights and environmental stressors (e.g. heat stress, vaccination, etc.) demonstrated that the addition of chromium propionate in feed resulted in consistent improvements in adjusted feed conversion ratio (FCR), mortality and breast meat yield (Table 1). These university results coincide with the results seen in field evaluations with chromium propionate supplementation.
Table 1. Summary of key performance parameters for various strains, weights and ages of broilers from university pen trials.
*Compared to control. ND - No difference from control.
**Adjusted weights and FCR.
Study 1: Vignale, K., D. Koltes, J.Weil, S. West, S. Weimer, V. Iseri, K. Christensen. 2017. The effect of chromium propionate on performance responses in heat stressed male broiler chickens. 2017 International Poultry Scientific Forum. Atlanta, GA. Abstract T181, page 53.
Study 2: Lester, T., K. Brown, C. Eagleson, V. Iseri, J. Lee. 2017. Evaluation of chromium propionate on broiler growth performance and processing yields. Journal of Poultry Science 96 (E-suppl. 1): 188.
Study 3: Kemin Internal Document, 18-00003.
Study 4: Lester, T., K. Brown, K. Vignale, C. Alvarado, J. Lee. 2018. Evaluation of chromium propionate and a butyric acid complex on male growth performance, corticosterone level and meat yield. 2018 International Poultry Scientific Forum. Atlanta, Georgia. Abstract M86, pg. 26.
1Puvadolpirod S., J. P. Thaxton. 2000. Model of physiological stress in chickens 1. Response parameters. Poult. Sci. 79:363-369.
2Alejandro, C.-I., et al. 2014. Environmental Stress Effect on Animal Reproduction. Open Journal of Animal Sciences, 4, 79-84.
3Miller, D.B., et al. 2002. Neuroendocrine Aspects of the Response to Stress. Metabolism. Vol 51:5-10.
4Mirfendereski, E., R. Jahanian. 2015. Effects of dietary organic chromium and vitamin C supplementation on performance, immune responses,
blood metabolites, and stress status of laying hens subjected to high stocking density. Poultry Science 94:281–288.
5Lester, T., K. Brown, C. Eagleson, V. Iseri, J. Lee. 2017. Evaluation of chromium propionate on broiler growth performance and processing
yields. Journal of Poultry Science 96 (E-suppl. 1): 188.
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