Reports from VIV Europe

Lipid digestion: Kemin building the science in a bid to improve feed sector knowledge

By Jane Byrne contact

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Fat

Lipid digestion: Kemin building the science in a bid to improve feed sector knowledge
The volatility in the cost of fats and oils and the uncertainty around the nutritional value of certain lipid by-products were the factors behind Kemin’s move to collate and publish the latest scientific research on lipid nutrition.

Dr Tom Verleyen, marketing director at Kemin animal nutrition and health, EMEA, told at VIV Europe that the company recently initiated a series of discussions with some of the leading animal nutrition researchers on strategies to optimize lipid digestion.

“Over the past few months, we have been building the science on how fats and oils influence pig and poultry production and also evaluating ways to improve lipid absorption.

We decided to gather the contributions in the format of scientific papers to disseminate the key findings to feed and livestock producers to help ensure greater understanding of lipid nutrition and boost animal production profitability,”​ he said.

The publication, the second in Kemin's Total Nutrition series, includes papers from Professor Julian Wiseman from the University of Nottingham, the University of Minnesota’s Jerry Shurson as well as Professor Geert Janssens from the University of Ghent and V Ravindran from Massey University in New Zealand.

John Springate, president of the animal nutrition and health division of Kemin, said as the demand for meat is projected to rise by nearly 40% in the next 20 years, there is an increasing need to improve feed efficiencies: “A more efficient use and knowledge on oils and fats nutrition can certainly play a role in this challenge."

Challenges using industry by-products

Fats and oils are said have around twice the dietary energy-yielding capacity of carbohydrates, and also can provide essential fatty acids. Understandably, they are prized by feed makers looking to meet the nutrient and dietary needs of fast growing broilers and pigs.

The industry now has access to a much wider range of fat sources.

Recent years has seen a shift away from sole reliance on animal fat blends and soybean oil for energy needs, with the feed sector able to tap into the diverse range of lipids generated by food industry waste streams such as by-products from palm, coconut and olive oils.

However, there is a huge variance in the biological composition and nutritional quality of these lipids, leaving nutritionists, who want to avoid a negative impact on animal performance, at a loss as to which inclusion level to use when adding certain lipids into feed formulations.

Lipid evaluation test

As nutritional values and other lipid components are challenging to measure in house, Kemin said it also rolling out an evaluation test to provide the feed sector with more accurate lipid profiles.

Feed producers can send us samples of fats and oils, which will undergo chemical analysis at our laboratory, and we then generate reports on their energy values and oxidative status,” ​said Verleyen.

He said this lipid diagnosis gives nutritionists a clear and accurate understanding of the nutritional and quality status of oils and fats and, thus, helps them make informed decisions on their use in feed formulations.

The company's evaluation test won the animal health and nutrition innovation award at VIV Europe this week.


Professor Wiseman, in his contribution to the Kemin book, said as many of the fats and oils used in animal feed are by-products of other industrial processes, it is likely they have undergone heat treatment and are thus prone to some form of degradation.

He said the use of antioxidants to protect the lipids, added as early as possible in the manufacturing process as oxidative degeneration is irreversible, is crucial to optimise the quality of the animal feed.  

Related topics: Suppliers, Safety, Europe, Fats

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