“With this latest addition to the Mycofix range, we now have a full toolbox of advanced solutions for broiler and finishing pig producers,” said Ursula Hofstetter, head of global product management, mycotoxins, Biomin.
“Although fattening animals have shorter lifespans than breeding animals, mycotoxins can still have devastating effects on animals and, consequently, on producers’ profits,” she said.
A variety of mycotoxins are found in broiler and finishing pig feedstuffs at levels below regulatory limits and guidance levels. Even below these limits, mycotoxins can have damaging effect on animal health, welfare and performance, noted the mycotoxin expert.
Mycotoxins target gut integrity and allow the entrance of pathogens in the intestinal track, resulting in decreased nutrient uptake and less weight gain, she continued.
“In addition to damaging gut integrity, mycotoxins can disrupt herd and flock uniformity, damage the immune system and contribute to vaccine failure and increase bacterial contamination of carcasses,” said Hofstetter.
High endotoxin (lipopolysaccharide, or LPS) loads in an animal’s gastrointestinal tract contribute to inflammation, effectively wasting energy that would otherwise go towards growth, she added
Verena Starkl, senior product manager, Biomin, speaking to this publication in September, said mycotoxins are also linked to the onset of respiratory diseases in finishing pig production. “In Latin America, there is a growing awareness among producers that mycotoxins, especially fumonisins (FUM), act as a co-factor in the development of respiratory diseases.”
A study carried out by the University of Veterinary Medicine in Vienna with the Biomin Research Center found that deoxynivalenol (DON) can alter the intestinal paracellular permeability in broiler chickens and facilitates the translocation of enteric microorganisms such as E. coli to extra-intestinal organs. The consumption of DON-contaminated feed can induce an intestinal breakdown with negative consequences on broiler health, found those researchers.
An INRA study from 2018 confirmed the negative impact of DON on feed intake, feeding behavior, and the growth performance of finishing pigs, and the severity of DON toxicity on pig performance is related to the duration, the age of exposure and the number of toxin challenges.