Producer prices are giving rise to hope again and consideration of consumer interests calls for innovations. This is a good setting for an international trade fair for animal production such as EuroTier in November. Accordingly the organizer, DLG, is satisfied with the stand bookings by exhibitors. Only a few have stuck their head in the sand early and decided not to participate in the trade because of the depressed mood in animal husbandry in the first half of the year. DLG is also expecting a good level of visitors. Most of the exhibition stands will be showing solutions for achieving more animal welfare in the housing facilities. However EuroTier will trigger a flow of information on intensive animal husbandry not only in the industry, but also among consumers. The question is only how they accept that intensive and animal-kindly are not mutually exclusive.

» Influence of the Fertiliser Ordinance on animal husbandry considering pigs as an example
Challenges and opportunities

The Fertiliser Ordinance regulates environmentally friendly fertilising of agricultural and horticultural crops. Fertilising with farm-produced manure as well as with mineral and organic fertilisers should be carried out to match needs as precisely as possible. The Ordinance includes specifications on determining fertiliser and nutrient needs, fertiliser spreading times and techniques, and the annual production of nutrient balance comparisons. These nutrient comparisons should help to achieve the most even nutrient balances possible, especially in the case of nitrogen and phosphate. In farming, with its weather-related imponderables, this is a major challenge and it is well known how impossible it is to reach 100 per cent use of the nutrients applied. Certain unavoidable losses must therefore be factored in as tolerable and are stated as such in the Fertiliser Ordinance.

» Fibre supply in monogastric animals
Quantity or quality?

Both in science and in the feed industry, the importance of "fibre" as a component of rations for monogastric animals is indisputable with regard to the functions to stabilize the digestive processes and in particular to the maintenance of intestinal health. In various countries, legal regulations are valid in this area.

» Effect of medium chain fatty acids on FCR and bacteria profiles in the gut of broilers
Less bacteria and better FCR

Many people in our industry talk about MCFAs or MCT. MCFAs means medium-chain fatty acids, which are fatty acids with a chain length of 6, 8, 10 or 12 carbon atoms. This means that we talk about C6-fatty acids, C8-fatty acids, C10-fatty acids or C12-fatty acids. These medium chain fatty acids are not bind with glycerine, they are in a free form as free fatty acids (FFA). MCT means medium chain triglyceride, this is an oil, sometimes it is called MCT-oil, for example palm kernel oil. Palm kernel oil contains high levels of C12-triglycerides. MCFAs have strong antibacterial properties. Products with high levels of C8, C10 and C12 are of big interest in the feed industry, because of the antibacterial effect. C8 and C10 fatty acids have a strong antibacterial effect on gram negative bacteria, like E. Coli and Salmonella, and C12 fatty acids have a strong antibacterial effect on gram positive bacteria, like Streptococcus and Clostridia. These products have a positive effect on the intestinal integrity of animals and a positive effect on the technical performance. Medium-chain fatty acids are most suitable for pigs, poultry and calves. Noba Vital Lipids has a product range named ‘Vital range’ with different combinations of MCFAs.

» Improving foot pad health and performance in poultry
Plant-based feed additives solve problems

In recent years, soft performance indicators such as foot pad health have moved increasingly into the focus of animal production. There are various reasons for this. Tabler et al. (2013) see an upswing in attention since the 1980s, when there was a rise in offering broiler feet for export to Asia and no longer considering them as “worthless” slaughter residues. In Europe, a further important factor enters into consideration– animal welfare. This aspect first revolutionised layer hen keeping (conversion from cage to barn and free range keeping) and also placed a new focus on broiler and turkey keeping. As a consequence of the Decree (Lower Saxony) of 18 July 2014 for broilers and the uniform German benchmarks for a voluntary agreement on keeping fattening turkeys from the year 2013, with the help of animal-based indicators conclusions are to be drawn on the health status and well-being of the turkeys. Here the spotlight will be on the quality of the foot pads especially, as official veterinarians use this as a direct indicator for keeping conditions.

» Diarrhoea on weaning and PRRS diseases
The use of spray-dried pig plasma in special situations on pig farms

Spray-dried pig plasma (abbreviated to SDP) is a functional component in pig nutrition described extensively in scientific literature, which is recommended for use in animal stress conditions. Although the best-known application is during weaning, thanks to its well-known effect regarding animal growth and health (Coffey und Cromwell, 2001, Van Dijk et al, 2001) it has also successfully demonstrated efficiency in situations with frequent pathogenic challenges on commercial farms, such as diarrhoea resistant to gastric juices, caused by E coli enterotoxigenes or rotavirus, or stress due to infections with pathogens that affect other mucous membranes, such as the virus of the Porcine Reproductive and Respiratory syndrome ((PRRS) and Porcine Circovirus-2 (PCV-2).

» Customised enzymes for optimal animal feed mixes
Technical processes improve the product properties

Feeds need enzymes that work optimally as well as being temperature-stable and storable. Two methods are particularly suitable for producing easy-to-process granules and pellets from sensitive, liquid enzyme solutions – the fluidised bed and the spouted bed methods. The plant manufacturer Glatt Ingenieurtechnik is one of the world’s leading experts in this field and offers feed producers technology and plant expertise from a single source.

» “Family-run companies have an obligation”
Interview with Stefan Niemeyer, Managing Partner at Miavit

The past years at Miavit have been characterised by dynamic growth and diversification. Special products aim to release the traditional premix sector from the clutches of ruinous competition.

» Antibacterial effects of zinc oxide in weaned piglets
Preventing post-weaning diarrhea

Dietary zinc oxide is known to increase growth and reduce post-weaning diarrhoea in piglets. But why the other forms of zinc do not manage to perform as well as zinc oxide? Let’s focus on the antimicrobial activity of zinc oxide.

» Improving nutritional value of feed
Supplementing pig diets with enzyme-producing probiotics

To maximize efficiency in pig production, many parameters have to be considered. Since feed prices account for about 70% of production cost, feed composition and nutrient digestibility need to be optimized. In modern livestock production and animal nutrition feed additives play an important role because they help to improve the utilization of nutrients in feed, leading to increased performance and profitability. This is the reason why the market for feed additives, including probiotics, has grown steadily over recent years.

» Availability of calcium sodium phosphate (DFP) for poultry
Current WPSA standards taken into account

In the past there has been controversial discussion about the suitability of calcium sodium phosphate, also referred to as DFP (defluorinated feed phosphate). Especially in the poultry sector, DFP has often been rated in scientific literature as displaying lower phosphorus digestibility compared with MCP. New practical trials conducted with the feed phosphate Rucana repudiate these earlier assumptions.