the quantity of nutrients required by an animal to remain healthy and highly productive. Feeding standards are set in accordance with productivity (milk, meat, wool, eggs), composition of the product (fat content of milk), and physiological condition (growth, fetal development). Feeding standards differ for animals according to breed, age, and intended use. Consideration is also given to varying regional conditions.
Modern feeding standards include the animal’s total nutritional needs, expressed in feed units—digestible protein, calcium, phosphorus, and carotene. Standards of consumption of vitamins and trace elements have been established for each animal type; for swine and poultry, standards have also been established for amino acids. Feeding standards are not permanent, but are reexamined with changes in agricultural technology and production targets. Feed rations are based on feeding standards.