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Effect of Sweet Green Pepper on Yolk Colour and Performance of Laying Hens

20 March 2015

New research from Brazil shows that sweet green pepper can improve egg yolk colour when it is included in the diets of laying hens. At high levels, it did reduce egg size but otherwise, it had no adverse effects on performance or egg quality parameters measured.

The addition of sweet green pepper (SGP) to layer diets impacted yolk colour and may be useful in specialty markets in this study from Brazil.

Lead author of the paper, published in Journal of Applied Poultry Research, Patricia Rossi of the Federal Technical University of Paraná and her co-authors added that the depression of egg weight with the inclusion of SGP, may offer producers and industry a way to control egg size in older layers and possibly improve shell quality.

For the experiment, the researchers used a total of 144 Hy Line W36 egg layers randomly assigned to four treatments with nine replicate groups of four hens each.

Treatments consisted of the following diets:

  1. basal diet (BD)
  2. BD + 75ppm SGP
  3. BD + 125ppm SGP and
  4. BD + 225ppm SGP.

The diets contained 2,730kcal per kg metabolisable energy and 15.5 per cent crude protein.

Egg production and egg quality were monitored for 16 weeks.

Feed intake, hen-day egg production, egg mass, and feed conversion per dozen were not significantly affected by the addition of SGP to the diets.

The addition of 225ppm of SGP decreased egg weight.

Specific gravity, albumen height, Haugh unit, yolk weight, albumen weight, albumen percentage and yolk yellowness (b*) were not significantly affected by the addition of SGP.

The addition of SGP to the diets increased yolk percentage, yolk colour using a Roche fan and yolk redness (a*).

Based on these data, SGP was shown to be a useful feed ingredient for laying hens, concluded Rossi and co-authors, who added that it can be included in diets without negative effects on performance and egg quality. 


Rossi P., J.K. Nunes, F. Rutz, M.A. Anciuti, P.V.D. Moraes, S.E. Takahashi, A.L.B. Bottega and J.M. Dorneles. 2015. Effect of sweet green pepper on yolk color and performance of laying hens. J. Appl. Poult. Res. 24(1):10-14. doi: 10.3382/japr/pfu003

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March 2015

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