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Chemical and mineral compositions of pods of Moringa stenopetala and Moringa oleifera cultivated in the lowland of Gamogofa Zone

Aberra Melesse, Kefyalew Berihun.

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This study was conducted to evaluate the chemical and mineral compositions of whole and seeds-removed fresh pods of Moringa stenopetala and Moringa oleifera. Feed samples were collected from five trees of each Moringa species and analyzed for nutrients using standard methods. The results indicated that whole fresh pods of both Moringa species contained high crude protein (CP), fat and gross energy (GE) values. The highest CP (182 g/kg DM) was obtained from whole fresh pods of M. stenopetala while the lowest in seeds-removed fresh pods of M. oleifera (104 g/kg DM). The GE content (17.3-18.0 MJ/kg DM) was similar across pod parts except in seeds-removed fresh pods of M. stenopetala with the lowest value (16.3 MJ/kg DM). In both Moringa species, seeds-removed fresh pods contained high crude fiber, neutral detergent fiber, cellulose and hemicelluloses. In M. stenopetala, calcium content was 3.72 and 2.98 g/kg DM in whole fresh pods and seeds-removed fresh pods, respectively. In M. oleifera, whole and seeds-removed fresh pods contained 3.34 and 2.74 g/kg DM calcium, respectively. High zinc and iron concentrations were found in whole and seeds-removed fresh pods of both Moringa species, respectively. Both whole and seeds-removed fresh pods of M. oleifera had higher copper values (9.3-9.7 mg/kg DM) than those of M. stenopetala (4.8-5.8 mg/kg DM). In conclusion, the fresh pods of both Moringa species could be used as alternative energy and protein sources for feeding ruminant and monogastric animals during dry periods of the year. The fresh pods might be also useful source of macro and trace minerals in human nutrition.

Key words: Gamogofa zone; Moringa pods; Chemical composition; Mineral composition

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