ruminants but rarely in poultry.Enzymes however are used in mostpoultry feeds and have been for many yearsand are also very commonly found in pigfeeds, particularly in the starter and early grower phases. Since the substantial risein phosphate prices and at times shortageof supply phytase use is very widespread.Enzymes are rarely used in ruminants andmuch more research is required in this areain order to find an effective solution if indeed there is one.Antioxidants and preservatives are widely used in all feed types in order to protect val-uable nutrients for the shelf life of the feed.Omega-3 fatty acids are becoming morepopular due to the removal of fishmeal fromfeeds. The oil present in fishmeal is a sourceof omega-3 fatty acids and fishmeal removalhas led to most diets being deficient in thesefatty acids. As more and more researchis done into their effects and benefits it iscertain their use will increase further.Mycotoxin binders are becoming morecommon as the world’s weather patterns areleading to more challenging growing condi- tions increasing the risk of mould growth.Moulds are the source of mycotoxins andas recent surveys have shown around 40percent of feed andraw mate-rial sam-ples testedfromaround the worldhave one
he term feed enhancer covers avery wide range of products rangingfrom simple flavours and sweetenersthrough to enzymes. They all have the samebasic aim, which is to enhance the feed ina beneficial way. The enhancement may beto make the feed more attractive to theanimal or bird or to enable more nutrientsto be obtained from it. The ultimate goalis to maximise the feed intake and ensurethat the most nutrients can be obtainedfrom it in order to maximise performanceand achieve the most profitability.
Types of Enhancer
1 Flavours and sweeteners2. Enzymes3. Antioxidants4. Preservatives5. Omega-3 fatty acids6. Mycotoxin binders7. Yeasts
The popularity of the different productsdepends upon the species with some beingvery specific and some used across all spe-cies. Flavours are widely used in pigs andor more mycotoxin present.Yeasts and yeast cell wall products havebeen shown to enhance feed digestibility across all species with species-specific prod-ucts available.
How do they work?
1. Flavours and sweeteners
The basic mode of action of a flavour is to increase feed intake. There are a hugenumber of different products such as ani-seed, citrus, red fruits, vanilla and so on. It hasbeen shown that certain flavours are better for some species than others. Typically ani-seed and citrus are used in ruminant feedswhereas red fruits and vanilla are used in pigfeeds typically starter feeds. They range fromsimple natural products to very complexblends of synthetic, natural and nature identi-cal compounds.The aim however is the same: to attract the animals to the feed and make them con-sume more. They are also useful in maskingless palatable raw materials. It has also beenshown that certain components particularly those in essential oils have other properties.Carvacrol found in oregano oil has beenshown to stimulate digestive enzymes in thesmall intestine thus potentially improving feeddigestibility. It has been shown to have anantimicrobial effect on certain Gram negativespecies such as E. coliSweeteners are also useful particularly for pigs and ruminants and can be simply as molasses or sugars such as dextrose or lactose. Molasses is also useful as a pelletingaid and dust suppressant making the feed
by Richard Remmer, Director of Nutrition at Anpario plc, United Kingdom
fd illinG thnlGy14 | november - december 2012