Publish Date: December 13, 2012
Marketed under the trade-name Paylean™ (Elanco Animal Health, Greenfield, IN), ractopamine hydrochloride (RAC) is a phenethanolamine β-adrenergic agonist used as a feed supplement to redirect nutrients to improve live pig performance (daily gain and feed conversion efficiency) and fat-free lean yields in pork carcasses . Research was initiated in the 1980’s and RAC was FDA-approved for inclusion in swine finishing diets in December 1999. Initial approval included an inclusion range of 4.5 to 18 g/ton and fed from 150 to 240 lb. In 2006, the label changed to include an inclusion range from 4.5 to 9 g/ton of feed and to be fed for the last 50 to 90 lbs of body weight gain prior to market. This overview summarizes all levels of Paylean feeding; however, as producers consider the current, approved feeding level, more emphasis should be placed on the 4.5 to 9 g/ton data. The specific focus of the factsheet is an overview of the effects of RAC on fresh pork quality and cooked pork palatability.