Influences of Different Sources of Natural Pigments on the Color and Quality of Eggs from Hens Fed a Wheat-Based Diet

Document Type : Research Article


Department of Animal Science, Shabestar Branch, Islamic Azad University, Shabestar, Iran


This experiment was conducted to evaluate effects of different sources of natural pigments on yolk color and laying hen performance. A completely randomized design with six treatments and six replicates was used.The six experimental treatments were: a control diet containing yellow corn grain, a reference diet containing wheat and barley grain instead of corn; a red pepper diet composed of reference diet and 2% red pepper; a dried carrot diet containing the reference diet and 5% dried carrot meal; a dried tomato pulp diet composed of the reference diet and 5% dried tomato pulp and an alfalfa meal diet containing the reference diet and 5% alfalfa meal. Results indicated that egg weight, daily egg mass, feed conversion ratio and egg yolk color were not affected by treatments. In conclusion, if the goal of producers is an acceptable level of egg yolk color and performance is not under consideration, then the use of a 5% alfalfa meal in a wheat-barley based diet is suggested.


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