|Nutrition Support Programs|
Programme 3: Feed Formulation Service
Every year the marketing age of broilers improves by an average of 0.75 days. This trend is likely to continue in the coming years. Tremendous improvement is being observed in the genetic capacity of broilers, layers and breeders. The following pictures reveal the improvement in the genetic capacity of poultry over the years.
|Performance: Know-edge Nutrition|
In maximizing performance nutrition plays a vital role. As the feed cost represents an expensive input, poultry producers need to be aware of the dynamics of feed and its influence on final product quality and quantity.
Formulating feeds ideally requires in-depth knowledge on several critical parameters from deciding how much energy needs to be fixed in the diet, balancing the amino acids in the diet and balancing the feed for electrolytes etc., which otherwise, if not properly adhered, will negatively influence the performance and profitability of the business.
Further in light of environmental challenges and disease outbreaks, it is even more challenging to extract the fullest genetic capacity of the birds.
Avitech, with almost four decades of experience in the poultry industry, understands poultry nutrition well and through its experience is able to provide nutrition solutions for different classes of poultry. Nutritionists at Avitech look at several critical parameters whilst formulating feed
|Table I: An idea of varying digestibility|
Important Parameters- Formulating Feed
1. Judging the Nutritive value of raw materials
Raw materials are purchased based on price, availability and nutritive value. However raw materials vary on their nutritive value from time-to-time, source-to-source and batch-to-batch. It is a very important task to assess nutritive value exactly each time to ensure the feed being manufactured is of the desired quality.
2. Digestibility of amino acids
In general, an average of 90% digestibility is considered whilst formulating feed or feed formulations are based on only total amino acids. Since raw materials vary in their digestibility, it is necessary to consider digestible amino acids whilst formulating the feed to ensure optimum performance. Table 1 provides an idea of the varying digestibility of amino acids in different raw materials.
From this, it is clear that formulations based on digestible amino acids will deliver improved results.
3. ME to digestible amino acid ratio
Environmental temperature and energy content of the feed are key factors that determine the feed intake of the bird. Other nutrients are normally adjusted based on the feed intake of the bird. There exists a relationship between the energy and digestible amino acids, which, if maintained,will enable adjustment of crude protein levels in the diet, thereby reducing the feed cost without compromising the performance. Avitech, through its experience, has arrived at ideal ME to digestible amino acids ratios and inter amino acid relationships etc. and these parameters are routinely implemented in Avitech’s formulation services.
4. Electrolyte balancing
Balancing electrolytes in poultry feed is essential in order to spare the bird energy in attempting to do the same. Apart from salts such as Sodium Chloride, Sodium Bi-carbonate and Potassium Chloride etc., electrolytes (Sodium, Potassium and Chloride) are also derived from feed raw materials. Electrolytes are further derived from feed additives like Chloride from Lysine Hydrochloride, Choline Chloride etc. An assessment
and adjustment in the electrolyte balance is important whilst formulating feeds.
5. Summer management
Adjustment will be made during summer in the feed formulations to take care of the reduction in feed intake, improving the tolerance of the bird towards hot weather, reduction of specific dynamic heat of metabolism, increasing the passage time of nutrients in the intestine through macro and micro formulation changes.
6. Improving the immunity of birds through feed
The current trend of intensive poultry keeping and omnipresent disease threats require specifi c attention towards improving the immune status of the bird through nutrition. Various natural and synthetic preparations may be used to accomplish this task. Avitech provides solutions through its vast research based experience to improve the immunity of the birds to combat disease challenges.
7. Modifying the growth response curve
At a given feed formulation, broilers respond to one particular growth curve. A nutritionist should optimise the growth pattern toward a desired growth curve (B - as shown in figure) to maximise the economics of broiler production. Avitech Nutritionists ensure that formulations follow the desired curve leading ultimately to improved economics of broiler production.
8. Animal Fat / Vegetable Fat ratios
Fat from animal sources as well as from vegetable sources are used in feeds. An ideal fatty acid profile should be maintained to improve the keeping quality and meat quality. Ideal ratio of animal fat and vegetable fat ratios ensures the desired fatty acid profile and ultimately better results.
9. Calcium hunger
Next to energy, birds adjust their feed intake based on calcium requirement. In other words, birds will eat more feed for want of calcium – a phenomenon also referred to as “calcium hunger”. Rapid growth potential of broilers require large quantities of feed to be consumed and hence feed manufacturers keep the calcium level at a marginal level. Understanding the calcium content of feeds and manipulating it to improve production dynamics is an important tool towards enhancing productivity.
10. Micro nutrient optimisation
Various micro ingredients are being employed in poultry feed production in terms of additives / supplements to make up the defi ciency (vitamins, trace minerals etc.), to maximise the performance (Antibiotic growth promoters, Lysophospholipids etc.) or to combat the disease challenges (Anticoccidials, Antibiotics etc.). The advise on the levels of usage based on the raw materials used and the right combination of additives to maximise economics is an important feature of the programme.
Further, the developing focus of poultry business towards functional parameters and other specific tasks such as: