Author(s): J Zelenka, D Schneiderova, E Mrkvicova, P Dolezal
Effects of 1, 3, 5 or 7% of linseed oil in the diet on the content of fatty acids in breast and thigh meat were studied in broiler chickens. Oils made either of seeds of the linseed cultivar Atalante (A) with a high content of α-linolenic acid or of the cultivar Lola (L) with a predominating content of linoleic acid were fed from 25 to 40 days of age. When feeding A, the contents of all n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA), including eicosatrienoic acid, were significantly higher, those of n-6 PUFA were lower, and the ratio of n-6/n-3 PUFA was narrower (P < 0.001) than when L was fed. The narrowest n-6 to n-3 PUFA ratio was observed at the content 36 g of α- linolenic acid (58 g A) per kg of the diet while the widest one at 2 g of α-linolenic acid (70 g L) per kg of the diet. When using L, the increasing level of linoleic acid in feed was associated with significantly increasing levels of all n-6 PUFA in meat. The content of all n-3 PUFA increased after the application of oil A, but the dependence for eicosapentaenoic acid in thigh meat was expressed significantly more precisely by the second degree parabola with the maximum at the level of 37 mg of α-linolenic acid and for clupanodonic and docosahexaenoic acids by parabolas with maxima at the level of α-linolenic acid in the diet 41 g and 30 g for breast meat and 35 g and 27 g for thigh meat, respectively. By means of the inclusion of linseed oil with a high content of α-linolenic acid in the feed mixture it would be possible to produce poultry meat with a high content of n-3 PUFA as a functional food.