AveMix® Pro – The premium tool for protein digestion and diet optimization
Over the last decades, there has been a big shift in the type of protein sources used in animal feed. Worldwide, there has been a move away from animal protein (e.g., feather meal or whey product) to plant protein (e.g., soybean meal and sunflower meal). However, this is not without consequences for digestion, performance and the environment.
Issue of undigested protein
Plant protein can be linked to non-starch polysaccharide fibers, which makes it unavailable for digestion by the animal. Furthermore, plant protein can have a more complex structure that is harder for animals to digest. On average, 20% of the crude protein (CP) from plant raw materials is not digested (Table 1).
Table 1: Digestibility of crude protein (CP) from plant sources for broilers and pigs (CVB, 2021).
The undigested protein and amino acids (AA) reach the hindgut, where they are substrates for microbial fermentation by proteolytic bacteria. This increased fermentation, when in excess, can lead to the production of harmful metabolites (e.g., ammonia, nitric oxide, and hydrogen sulfide). This has an impact on animal welfare and increases the risk of issues such as diarrhea and wet litter.
In addition to this, undigested protein and AA that escapes microbial fermentation ends up as nitrogenous waste in the environment, which increases water and soil pollution. This is why there are more and more regulations and governmental pressure on nitrogen emissions from agriculture.
AveMix® Pro is the optimal solution
AveMix® Pro is a protease that is specifically adapted to help the animal’s own endogenous enzymes with breaking down indigestible peptides in the small intestine. The endopeptidase activity of AveMix® Pro increases protein and AA digestibility, as well as helping to control AA dependent bacteria and decrease nitrogen excretion. Therefore, AveMix® Pro promotes better animal performance and health whilst decreasing environmental impact.
Due to its high activity and broad action, AveMix® Pro can applied using either an on-top or reformulation approach in feed. With a reformulation approach, AveMix® Pro allows a decrease of protein from animal origin and an increase of less digestible protein from plant origin. Alternatively, diets can also be reformulated to enable a reduction of dietary digestible CP and AA. Trials using both of these reformulation approaches are presented in this article.
AveMix® Pro enables more effective use of less digestible plant protein
A 42 day weaned piglet trial was performed with a commercial partner using 184 animals. The animals were randomly allocated into two groups of 92: control and reformulated diets + AveMix® Pro. Relative to the control group, the reformulated diets had a higher average content of barley (+4.2%), corn (+10%) and soybean meal (+11.8%) along with a lower average content of fish meal (-5%), whey powder (-2.7%) and potato protein (-3.1%). This resulted in less digestible proteins, despite the same total CP content. The issue of this higher amount of less digestible plant protein was hypothesized to be resolved with the addition of AveMix® Pro.
Figure 1 – Using a diet reformulation approach with AveMix® Pro increases piglet growth performance and feed efficiency. Bars labelled with * were significantly different from the control group (P<0.05).
The findings of the trial clearly showed that, despite having a lower digestible protein content, AveMix® Pro significantly improved the feed conversion ratio relative to the control diet (Figure 1). This means that there is a great additional benefit when using AveMix® Pro to replace highly digestible protein with plant protein. Furthermore, an increased feed intake was observed which could be explained by improved health of the AveMix® Pro supplemented piglets. Together with the improved FCR, this resulted in a substantial increase of the growth rate.
AveMix® Pro enables a reduction of digestible nutrients
A 42 day broiler trial was performed with an academic partner using 240 birds. The birds were randomly allocated into three groups of 80: positive control, negative control and negative control + AveMix® Pro. The positive control group only received the basal diets. The negative control group received reformulated diets which, relative to the positive control group basal diets, had a lower content of CP (-3%) and digestible AA (-3%). The negative control + AveMix® Pro group received the reformulated diets with supplementation of AveMix® Pro.
Figure 2 - AveMix® Pro compensates for lower nutrient content and restores performance in broilers.
The reformulated negative control diet decreased broiler performance compared to the positive control, as evidenced by the decreased growth rate and increased feed conversion ratio and feed intake (Figure 2). However, the inclusion of AveMix® Pro allowed the deficiency in CP and AA to be overcome as evidenced by restoring the feed conversion ratio and even increasing growth rate. These findings clearly highlight the ability of AveMix® Pro to improve the protein digestibility of feed.
In conclusion, AveMix® Pro is an efficient protease enabling maximum protein digestibility for higher performance. AveMix® Pro helps to switch from highly digestible animal protein to plant protein. In addition, it allows protein reduction in the feed for more economical feed costs, improved health and decreased environmental pressure. For more information on AveMix® Pro, please get in contact with us.