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Pineapple by-products

Description and recommendations

Common names

Pineapple [English]; piña, ananá, ananás [Spanish]; ananas [French/Dutch]; ananás, abacaxi [Portuguese]; pynappel [Afrikaans]; abarba [Hausa]; nanas, nenas [Indonesian]; zannanna [Haitian Creole]; ganas [Sundanese]; pinya [Tagalog]; dứa [Vietnamese]; ኣናናስ [Amharic]; أناناس [Arabic]; আনারস [Bengali]; 파인애플 [Korean]; अनानास [Hindi]; אננס [Hebrew]; ಅನಾನಸ್ [Kannada]; ໝາກນັດ [Lao]; കൈതച്ചക്ക [Malayalam]; अननस [Marathi]; パイナップル [Japanese]; ਅਨਾਨਾਸ [Punjabi]; ананас [Russian]; අන්නාසි [Sinhala]; అనాస [Telugu]; அன்னாசி [Tamil]; สับปะรด [Thai]; انناس [Urdu]; 菠蘿 [Chinese]

Products: pineapple cannery by-products, pineapple by-products, pineapple bran, pineapple pulp, pineapple wastes, pineapple waste, pineapple crush waste


Ananas ananas (L.) Voss, Ananas duckei hort., nom. inval., Ananas sativus Schult. & Schult. f., Ananas sativus var. duckei Camargo, nom. nud., Bromelia ananas L., Bromelia comosa L.


With a world production of more than 18 million tons in 2009, pineapple ranks 12th among fruits crop worldwide (FAO, 2011). About 70% of the pineapple produced in the world is consumed as a fresh fruit in the country of origin (Loeillet, 1997). The remaining 30% is exported or transformed into canned slices, chunks, crush (solid pack) and juice. The post-harvest processing of pineapple fruits yields skins (outer peels), crowns, bud ends, cores, waste from fresh trimmings and the pomace of the fruit from which the juice has been extracted. Leaves and other non-fruit parts can be added to the wastes (Sruamsiri, 2007; Hepton et al., 2003; Devendra, 1985). These by-products account for approximately 30-35% of the fresh fruit weight. They can be used as soil amendments or as feedstuffs for all classes of livestock (Hepton et al., 2003). Like other fresh fruit by-products, fresh pineapple cannery wastes are rich in water (about 90%) and soluble carbohydrates and, therefore, decay very quickly. They must be consumed as soon as possible, but canneries are often not located in areas of animal production and transportation of such bulky products is expensive and may require daily visits to the cannery (Nguyen Thi Hong Nhan et al., 2009; O'Donovan, 1978). For those reasons, fresh pineapple waste is often preserved by drying or ensiling.

Pineapple wastes can include variable proportions of cannery by-products and plant residues and are, therefore, quite diverse. The variety of the fruit, its ripeness and the cannery technology employed also influence the nature and value of these products (Müller, 1978). One particular product is the pineapple bran, which is the solid residue obtained when pressing macerated skins and crowns. The wet bran can be fed fresh to animals, ensiled for longer storage or dried until it contains less than 12% moisture. The liquid fraction (or mill juice) obtained by pressure is the pineapple syrup (Hepton et al., 2003; Göhl, 1982).


Pineapple is cultivated in many warm countries. The most important producers of canned pineapples are Asian countries including Thailand, the Philippines, Indonesia and Malaysia. In Africa, Kenya is also an important producer (Rohrbach et al., 2003).

Pineapple wastes are available year-round (Müller, 1978) or seasonally (Sruamsiri, 2007). Because the fresh wastes are bulky, the transportation costs are high and the wastes must be used in the vicinity of the canneries (O'Donovan, 1978). Dried and ensiled pineapple wastes are easier to handle and to store. However, unlike dried citrus pulp, dried pineapple waste is not a worldwide feed commodity and its use remains local.



Wet pineapple bran can be sun-dried in 3 days, or artificially dried within 1 day (after preliminary pressure) (Göhl, 1982). Partial or complete sun-drying is possible, but hazardous in the rainy season (O'Donovan, 1978).


Pineapple waste and bran are difficult to ensile due to their acidity and high moisture content. Pineapple waste can be mixed with hay, wilted grass or rice straw (Choopheng et al., 2005; Jitramano et al., 2005). A source of starch such as molasses, maize or sweet potatoes can be added to pineapple bran to improve the fermentation process (Göhl, 1982; O'Donovan, 1978). In one experiment, ensiled pineapple wastes (with or without rice straw) had a dry matter content lower than the optimal range of good silages but the final product was satisfying. This can be explained by the high carbohydrate content of pineapple wastes, and particularly by the fructose which is converted into lactic acid by lactic acid bacteria (Sruamsiri et al., 2007).

Environmental impact

Acceptable and safe solid-waste disposal is a serious problem in pineapple-processing operations (Hepton et al., 2003). Using the by-products as feed can help to alleviate the environmental impact of pineapple processing. In Malaysia, for instance, pineapple canneries used to dump the wastes into nearby rivers causing pollution. Today, the recycling of those wastes into animal feeds for cattle, whose manure is used as organic fertilizer for crop production, is an example of a crop-livestock integration that is able to sustain economic competitiveness without damaging the environment (Liang, 2001).

Potential constraints

Pesticides residues

Pineapple cultivation requires the use of pesticides and it is important to assess the levels of their residues in feeds (Hepton et al., 2003). In Brazil, the levels in pineapple bran of the usual pesticides benomyl, methyl parathion, diuron and vamidothion were found to be below the limits established for feedstuffs in that country (Cabrera et al., 2000).

Nutritional attributes

The composition and nutritive value of pineapple wastes varies with the ratios of by-products they include, the variety of the fruit, its ripeness and the cannery technology employed. The amount of nutrients (particularly sugars) in the wastes decreases when the efficiency of the juice extraction increases (Müller, 1978). Raw pineapple wastes are relatively poor in protein (4-8% DM) and high in crude fibre (16-25% DM) and NDF (60-72% DM) (Müller, 1978; Feedipedia, 2011; Correia et al., 2006; Rogerio et al., 2007; Pereira et al., 2009). It contains large amounts of soluble sugars (40-75% DM: about 70% sucrose, 20% glucose and 10% fructose) as well as pectins (Müller, 1978). Due to this high variability, pineapple wastes have been described as both equivalent to cereal grains for ruminants (Müller, 1978), and as a low-nutrient feed (Hepton et al., 2003). The waste is poor in minerals (Müller, 1978). The high amount of fibre makes pineapple wastes more suitable to ruminants than to pigs and poultry. The bulkiness of the fresh products limits intake (O'Donovan, 1978).

Please note that studies about the feed value of pineapple wastes rarely provide precise descriptions of these products. Information about the respective amounts of skins, leaves, cores, fruit flesh, etc. is usually absent so it is nearly impossible to properly categorise these products from a nutritional point of view.

Tables of chemical composition and nutritional value


Pineapple by-products have long been considered an excellent feed for ruminants. Particularly, there is a large amount of early research and experience supporting the use of pineapple wastes in beef cattle and dairy cattle (Müller, 1978). They can successfully replace a large part of (even all) the diet roughages (Müller, 1978), or part of the diet cereals in the case of meat animals (Geoffroy, 1985). Pineapple juice by-products (without the crown) were found to have a higher energy value than maize silage and were able to partly replace energy concentrates in diets for ruminants (Azevêdo et al., 2011).

However, because pineapple wastes contain low amounts of protein and minerals, supplementation is required when the diet is based on a large amount of those products in order to prevent detrimental effects on productivity and health (Müller, 1978).


Pineapple wastes are very palatable and only require a few days of adaptation (Müller, 1978). Fermented pineapple waste is less acidic than fresh waste and is preferred by livestock (Sruamsiri, 2007).

Nutritional values

Pineapple wastes are very digestible for ruminants, with reported OM digestibility values in the 73-75% range in cattle, sheep and goats (Müller, 1978).

Dairy cattle

Early research suggests that pineapple waste could replace 30% to 90% of the  forages in dairy cow rations (Müller, 1978). There are few recent publications about the use of pineapple by-products for dairy cattle. Pineapple waste mixed with rice straw replacedup to 50% roughage in the total mixed ration for dairy cattle without decreasing milk production (Sruamsiri, 2007). Using pineapple wastes in total mixed rations for dairy cows was more economically beneficial (higher milk yield and lower feed cost) than feeding pineapple wastes ad libitum with a concentrate supplement (Chinvaroj et al., 2001).

Beef cattle

In the Philippines, fresh pineapple wastes have been extensively and successfully used to feed beef cattle, replacing up to 85% of the forage in the diet (Müller, 1978). Most trials have focused on pineapple waste silage. The value of feeding both pineapple canning by-products and pineapple crop residues (leaves and stems) was also demonstrated in the Philippines, where large scale feeding trials on cattle given pineapple pulp and pineapple leaf silage, together with a 35% protein concentrate at 0.6% body weight, gave daily live weight gains of between 0.38 and 0.48 kg/d (Albarece, 1979 cited by Devendra, 1985). In the French West Indies, feeding ensiled pineapple waste (70% of the diet DM) with a protein supplement and 2.5 kg fresh forage to 250-300 kg steers resulted in high daily weight gains (1 kg/day), and allowed a marked decrease in feeding costs (Geoffroy et al., 1984). In Brazil, pineapple waste silage replaced up to 60% maize silage with no significant detrimental effect on final live weight and average daily gains, though DM, OM and ME intake decreased (Prado et al., 2003). In Vietnam, supplementation of the native grass Sacciolepis interrupta with ensiled pineapple waste resulted in higher average daily gain (0.32 vs. 0.27 kg/d). Adding rice polishings to the ensiled pineapple waste did not add nutritional benefits (Nguyen Thi Hong Nhan et al., 2009). Other ensiled mixtures have been proposed. In Malaysia, a silage made of 80% pineapple wastes and 10% poultry litter, with molasses and additives, was found to be economically viable, provided that a good nutrient balance was achieved (Müller, 1980).


In lambs, pressed (down to 24-25% DM) and ensiled pineapple waste with fresh forage and soybean meal gave similar growth (180 g/day) as the control diet (fresh forage and compound feed). It was estimated that the product had a value similar to that of pressed beet pulp (Geoffroy et al., 1984).

Several Brazilian studies have reported positively on the potential benefits of dried pineapple waste. In adult sheep, the inclusion of up to 14% dehydrated pineapple waste in Napier grass (Pennisetum purpureum) silage did not modify nutrient digestibility, but linearly increased DM intake (Ferreira et al., 2009). Dried pineapple was included at up to 27% in the diet (cottonseed meal and maize grain), replacing fresh Napier grass: the highest DM and ME intakes were observed at 11% and the authors recommended 16% as an optimal inclusion rate (Rogerio et al., 2007).


In Brazil, dehydrated pineapple by-products replaced 100% Cynodon dactylon hay in diets for growing female goats. It maintained or increased nutrient digestibility and resulted in satisfying body weight gains (Correia et al., 2006; Costa et al., 2007). In French Polynesia, ensiled pineapple by-products were found to be an interesting resource for goats during the feed shortage period in the dry season, and it was recommended to associate it with copra meal in the diet (at a level of 25% diet DM) (Llorca Lionet et al., 2000). In Nigeria, a silage made of pineapple pulp, young lima bean vines (Phaseolus lunatus) and fresh Napier grass (Pennisetum purpureum) increased dietary protein content, nutrient digestibility, nitrogen absorption and retention, and also reduced weight loss of goats during the dry season (Ajayi, 2011). In a comparison of such silages made from the vines of either lima bean, cajan pea (Cajanus cajan) or African yam bean (Sphenostylis stenocarpa), the silage based on lima bean vines, pineapple pulp and Napier grass produced the optimal growth rate and weight gain (Ajayi et al., 2012).


In 2011, research on the use of pineapple wastes for pigs was limited to a series of 11 trials carried out in the 1930-1940s in Hawaii. Dried pineapple bran was not very palatable to pigs, who only selected it at 5-9% of the ration when offered ad libitum. The high crude fibre content (20% DM) limited its use in pigs. In particular, pineapple bran was not recommended for pigs under 27 kg except in small quantities. However, it produced adequate results with older pigs weighing over 57 kg at inclusion rates as high as 50% of the diet. At higher levels the rate of weight gain decreased and feed conversion was depressed. Protein supplementation was required. Grinding did not improve daily gain or feed efficiency (Henke, 1949; Gantt, 1938; Göhl, 1982).


Pineapple bran is not beneficial to poultry. It was found to adversely affect growth and feed conversion in chicks even at low levels (Ross, 1966 cited by Devendra, 1988). Another experiment found that 15% (diet DM) pineapple bran in chick diets depressed the feed conversion ratio and 20% decreased weight gain. An ME value of 7.8 MJ/kg DM was proposed (Hutagalung et al., 1973).


In tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus), pineapple wastes replaced up to 75% maize grain in the diet. An inclusion rate of 50-75% gave the highest growth performances but total substitution was detrimental to growth (Akegbejo-Samsons et al., 2006).

In rohu fingerlings (Labeo rohita), dehydrated fruit processing wastes were safely used at a level of 25% in the diet. Pineapple wastes significantly promoted higher growth rates in fingerlings than sweet lime and orange wastes (Abani Deka et al., 2003).


Heuzé V., Tran G., Giger-Reverdin S., 2015. Pineapple by-products. A programme by INRA, CIRAD, AFZ and FAO. Last updated on March 30, 2015, 11:44


Tables of chemical composition and nutritional value

Main analysis Unit Avg SD Min Max Nb
Dry matter % as fed 88.6 1.7 87.6 90.6 3
Crude protein % DM 4.5 1.2 3.5 5.8 3
Crude fibre % DM 17.8 2.8 16.1 21.1 3
NDF % DM 41.8 1
ADF % DM 20.9 1
Lignin % DM 3.9 1
Ether extract % DM 1.2 0.6 0.5 1.7 3
Ash % DM 8.1 5.2 5.1 14.1 3
Gross energy MJ/kg DM 17.0 *
Minerals Unit Avg SD Min Max Nb
Calcium g/kg DM 4.9 4.2 2.1 9.8 3
Phosphorus g/kg DM 1.3 0.2 1.1 1.4 3
Potassium g/kg DM 21.3 17.6 24.9 2
Sodium g/kg DM 0.2 1
Magnesium g/kg DM 1.2 1
Amino acids Unit Avg SD Min Max Nb
Arginine % protein 1.8 1
Cystine % protein 0.3 1
Histidine % protein 1.0 1
Isoleucine % protein 3.5 1
Leucine % protein 5.5 1
Lysine % protein 2.0 1
Methionine % protein 0.5 1
Phenylalanine % protein 8.5 1
Threonine % protein 3.3 1
Tryptophan % protein 3.0 1
Tyrosine % protein 6.8 1
Valine % protein 4.3 1
Ruminant nutritive values Unit Avg SD Min Max Nb
ME ruminants (FAO, 1982) MJ/kg DM 10.8 1
Nitrogen digestibility, ruminants % 0.0 1
Pig nutritive values Unit Avg SD Min Max Nb
Energy digestibility, growing pig % 62.2 *
DE growing pig MJ/kg DM 10.6 *

The asterisk * indicates that the average value was obtained by an equation.


CIRAD, 1991; Holm, 1971; Palafox et al., 1961; Rogerson, 1956

Last updated on 24/10/2012 00:44:47



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