A trial in Indonesia on 300,000 broilers compared performance when fed either feed additives or AGPs. The results show that the animals on the feed additives reached similar performance to those on AGPs.
The challenge to keep performance up in antibiotic free environments
There is a worldwide concern to reduce antibiotics use in animal production. This tendency is driven by industry and consumers concerns and backed up by several research studies on antimicrobial resistance.
Poultry producers are often reluctant to reduce the use of antibiotic growth promoters (AGPs). This is due to worries about the likely impact on animal performance and profitability. Withdrawing AGPs might result in a productivity drop. In this context, the use of feed additives that support gut health and increase overall animal performance seems to be a smart strategy in antibiotic free environments.
Trouw Nutrition set up a commercial trial in a large broiler integrator in Indonesia. The goal was to compare the performance of broilers fed feed additives with those fed AGPs. It’s important to consider that leading poultry producers have set high quality standards to their broiler farming management and production spearheads.
Proven results in a large field trial
The study was done to compare the performance of broilers fed a combination of two Selko feed additives with those fed AGPs. The outcome was indeed encouraging. The use of both additives together showed comparable good results as with AGP, achieving a high performance index.
In the 35 days trial, 300,000 Cobb 500 broilers received commercial feed with the addition of either a commonly used AGP or a feed additive via drinking water and another additive in the feed. The birds, monitored for technical performance, were held in closed houses for the entire period. The results indicate that the performance of the birds on the combined feed additives was comparable to the ones on AGP.
Furthermore, both groups had a low mortality rate (4.0% and 4.1%) which confirms the outstanding performance of the broilers in this study. The study shows that broiler integrators are able to reach excellent performance in AGP free production systems when using feed additives. Farmers can potentially benefit from increasing revenues, as high-quality broilers raised without AGP can be sold to high-end markets.
The products tested in the study
Two Selko additives were tested. Selko-pH was applied via drinking water and Presan-FY was applied via feed. Selko-pH lowers and stabilises the pH of drinking water of animals. It supports digestion in the crop and stomach and maintains a healthy microbial balance in the proximal intestine. Presan-FY boosts the broilers’ gut barrier function and may maintain the microbiota balance. It enhances the broilers’ technical performance and helps to maintain a healthy status of the animals.
Selko is the feed additives brand of Trouw Nutrition, a Nutreco company. Selko’s portfolio consists of natural feed additive solutions that add value to integrators, feed mills and farmers. Focus areas are Salmonella control, feed safety, gut health in antibiotic-free production systems and trace mineral nutrition solutions. Selko solutions are offered as a complete package consisting of products, know-how and services. The Selko brand encompasses blends of organic acids, organic minerals, betaine and mycotoxin binders. Trouw Nutrition’s global sales organisation commercialises the Selko feed additives bra