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food production and safety, an interest that has trickled
down to affect the role of the premix manufacturer.
"The market is increasingly being driven by consumer choices and preferences," says Tom Taylor, managing
director for Cargill's U.S. premix and nutrition Provimi
business. "In the United States, customer requirements
for how we manufacture premix are evolving."
In addition to the elimination of antibiotics for growth
promotion (AGPs), consumers seek more "natural, wholesome and sustainable" options for their own diets, which
will continue to influence how food animals are fed.
As consumers embrace no-antibiotics-ever meats
and products, the need for alternative solutions is further amplified for livestock producers when they are
faced with environmental pressures, such as weather
fluctuations, density and health stressors, Taylor said.
To maintain animal performance in post-AGP production, premix manufacturers have had to adjust their
formulations and come to market with products featuring alternative feed additive solutions.
Adoption of specialty feed additives
When AGPs were banned in Europe more than a
decade ago, the market for medicated premix dropped
by more than 50 percent, said Harm de Wildt, CEO of
Trouw Nutrition. During this time, Trouw Nutrition
shifted its focus to the research and development of
functional feed additives as an AGP replacement.
"The reduction of AGPs brings new processing
techniques and new technical questions," said François
Fernandez, director of Neovia's Wisium. "But the main
influence of the AGP ban and its challenges is that it
pushed us to optimize and adapt our ways to create
solutions for the market."
In the wake of AGP elimination in the United States,
for example, nutritionists are seeing more demand to
include feed additives, such as probiotics, prebiotics and
phytogenics, in premix formulations to improve immunity, maintain performance and enhance gut health.
Debunking trace mineral myths in animal
"The importance of premixing technologies will
become even more relevant in the future as a large
number of new ingredients come to market," de Wildt
said. "The premix company has been and will remain
a gatekeeper - selecting effective ingredients from
non-effective ingredients - and will need to assure
quality even when new ingredients are used."
The efficacy of these feed additive combinations is
informing the long-term strategic plans and investments
being made by premix manufacturers. For example,
Macron points to Cargill's investment in phytogenic
feed additive supplier, Delacon, and its purchase of natural animal health product manufacturer, Diamond V.
Chuck Loefer, vice president of ADM Animal
Nutrition, agrees: "The increased need for alternative
additives is one of the reasons ADM is investing in new
specialty feed additive developments in bioactives."
While its medicated blend volumes have decreased,
ADM Animal Nutrition experienced an increase in
complex premixes containing the company's feed additives, such as its whole-cell yeast product and vegetable-based DHA omega-3 source.
However, the addition of new additives can complicate feed production.
"It is important that we work closely with customers
on their premix formulations to ensure the premix is of
the highest quality," Loefer said. "These formulations
start to include more non-traditional ingredients with various physical and chemical properties, which may make it
challenging to produce a uniform and stable premix that
mixes properly during the feed milling process."
Other factors shaping today's premixes
Beyond consumer pressure and reductions in medi-
ANIMAL FEED PREMIXES NOW include more
alternative additives in the wake of AGP elimination.
June 2018 ❙ www.WATTAgNet.com