Holistic approach needed in AGP-free era
The Asian Agribiz Broiler Feed Conferences in Bangkok and Jakarta welcomed close to 500 delegates coming from South Asia, Southeast Asia, East Asia, Australia, Europe and the US.
They learned from 16 global broiler nutrition experts about trends, new research and solutions on AGP, early chick nutrition, amino acid nutrition and water & environment management. The red line of these key topics is that there is no single solution for broiler production without AGP. That is why a holistic approach combining good nutrition, feeding & farm management and biosecurity, is needed.
Delegates that Asian Agribiz met praised the strong conference program and the knowledgeable experts. They are eager to implement the take-home messages in their operations.
At the same time, Asian Agribiz announced Vietnam’s Mavin Group as the winner of the 2019 Asian Feed Miller Sustainability Award, and two Indonesian feed producers, Malindo Feedmill and Suri Tani Pemuka, as the runners-up.
Kicking off the conferences Robert Renema, Principal at Robert Renema & Associates Poultry Consulting discussed the scope of antibiotic resistance, which according to him is now worse than we thought. He suggested that to address AGP alternatives, we need to explore mixed replacements and enhanced bird health – via feed additives and management.
Sharing his experience of reducing antibiotic use in commercial broiler farms in Canada, Derek Detzler, Global Technical Services Manager of Jefo Nutrition said coccidiosis vaccines are viable AGP alternatives, but they do not work as well as antibiotics and have to be managed differently. Therefore, he stressed that “AGP replacement can only be done with commitment, effort and time.”
In the wake of antibiotic resistance, phytogenics can be a new solution for respiratory challenges, according to Ruturaj Patil and P Kowsigaraj from EW Nutrition. With the key mechanism of eliminating mucus accumulation, regenerating the respiratory epithelium, and increasing feed intake, phytogenics can improve animal health in the context of reduced or no antibiotic use.
Meanwhile, from his trials, Juan Antonio Javierre, Research & Development Director at Tekzol SAS found that organic acids, and particularly butyric acid are proven potential AGP alternatives. However, it has to be stressed that other practices, including diet digestibility, early feed intake, farm management, and biosecurity, have to be put in place to guarantee success in commercial conditions.
Besides, according to Ricardo Esquerra, Global Poultry Manager of APC, spray-dried plasma is viable in reducing dependence on antibiotics because it improves performance, reduces mortality, and ameliorates the negative effects of stress and disease.
Early chick nutrition
Evidence suggest that intestinal growth and function of newly hatched chicks may not be adequate to support efficient growth, according to Ravi Ravindran, Professor of Poultry Science at Monogastric Research Centre, Massey University. He explained it may be possible to enhance intestinal growth in the embryo through breeder nutrition. Another approach would be in-ovo administration of highly digestible nutrients into the amnion of late-term embryo.
Discussing the same topic, Pietro Celi, Senior Scientist at DSM Nutritional Products said optimization of gastrointestinal functionality will promote sustainable broiler production. “Providing access to feed and water within the hatchery and developing highly digestible pre-starter diets has the potential to ameliorate gastrointestinal functionality. Post-hatch feeding can promote the development of the gastrointestinal tract and therefore, supports adequate digestion and absorption, resulting in a better transition from the yolk to the pre-starter diet,” he explained.
Amino acid nutrition
It has been reported that through proper formulation and use of added amino acids, nitrogen excretion can drop by 8-10% for each 1%-point drop in dietary nitrogen or crude protein. This decline in nitrogen excretion can be as much as 40-60%, according to Paul B Tillman, Poultry Nutrition Consultant at US Poultry Technical Nutrition Services.
On the other hand, he added the commercial availability of L-threonine and L-valine allows for a reduction in dietary crude protein, nitrogen output and an efficient means of meeting the broilers’ requirement for these two often limiting amino acids.
Focusing on seleno-amino acids, Kevin Liu, Vice President of Adisseo Asia Pacific said recent studies showed pure OH-SeMet has great potential and ability to enrich Se in eggs, embryos and offspring, which can help birds cope with various stresses, especially under challenging conditions.
Tim Walker, Independent Food Production Consultant from Australia said optimal water intake is needed to maximize broiler health, welfare and production. Rapidly growing broilers consume a lot of water for maintenance and growth. This water is physiologically necessary and broiler performance will decrease if water intake is restricted.
Sudipto Haldar, Director of India’s Agrivet Consultancy found that drinking water quality is often an afterthought on many poultry farms. The importance of ensuring the supply of clean, safe water has gained importance after the ban of in-feed antibiotics since the quality of drinking water has been found to have a huge impact on flock performance.
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Asian Agribiz honors
Prof Ravi Ravindran
At the Broiler Feed Quality Conference in Bangkok last Thursday, Asian Agribiz honored Professor V. (Ravi) Ravindran for his outstanding contribution to the development of the livestock nutrition industries in Southeast Asia. Professor Ravi is one of the world’s leading authorities in the field of poultry nutrition.
In August 2015, he received the McMeekan Memorial Award, New Zealand’s highest honor for a production animal scientist. Prof Ravi from Massey University, specializes in poultry nutrition, with emphasis on nutrient metabolism, feed enzymes, feed evaluation, amino acid availability, gut flora management and early nutrition in poultry.
The 2020 Broiler Feed Quality Conferences will be held in Bangkok on 5-6 August 2020 and in Jakarta 10-11 August 2020.