Ascorbic acid and citric flavonoids for broilers under heat stress: effects on performance and meat quality


Revista Brasileira de Ciência Avícola




The aim of this study was to evaluate the effects of increasing doses of ascorbic acid (AA) and citric flavonoids (quercetin and rutin) on the performance and meat quality characteristics of broilers submitted to cyclic heat stress. Four-hundred one-day-old female Ross 308 were housed in 40 battery cages a in temperature controlled room. Treatments consisted of 0, 250, 500, and 1000 g/ton on of AA + citric flavonoids. Birds were fed ad libitum until 32 day of age. Beginning on day 14 post-hatch until the end of the experiment, in order to simulate cyclic heat stress, the temperature inside the room was increased to 32°C for 5 hours, and decreased until reaching the comfort temperature corresponding to the age of the animals. Birds were slaughtered at 33 days of age, and carcass and commercial cuts yields were determined. Thighs and boneless breast samples were collected and frozen for subsequent analyses of pH, cooking loss, shear force, color, and Thiobarbituric Acid Reactive Substances (TBARS). Significant differences (p <0.05) were found for feed efficiency from 1 to 7 days of age, with the best values for the birds fed 0 and 250 g/ton on of AA + citric flavonoids. At the end of the experiment, there were no differences in other performance variables, carcass and parts yields, pH, shear force, color and TBARS. The meat of the birds supplemented with 250 g/ton on of product presented the lowest cooking loss.

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