Laying hens – Anco FIT Poultry maintains laying persistency in the late laying period

In a commercial trial with a parent flock of ISA Brown laying hens, Anco FIT Poultry showed higher laying persistency than the control group.

Materials and methods:

The trial was carried out on a farm of an ISA brown parent flock in Slovakia and started when the birds had reached an age of 47 weeks. The birds were housed in 4 halls of 17,000 birds each, of which 2 halls were fed Anco FIT Poultry at 1kg/t from week 47 to 62.

The young flocks had been sourced from two different farms (source A and B). Data was analyzed by source due to historical differences in performance between the two sources.

Results and discussion

Figure 1 above shows that the drop in egg production was slower in birds of both sources fed Anco FIT Poultry at 1kg/t in the feed compared to the control in the late laying period. As a result, birds fed Anco FIT Poultry produced on average 2% more eggs in the week 47 to 62 compared to the control.

Recent scientific trials have shown that Anco FIT Poultry improves the antioxidative capacity of broilers in the liver and the gut. The liver plays an important role in egg production and maintaining high liver health can help to sustain high laying persistency for longer laying periods. Therefore the positive impact seen with Anco FIT Poultry on laying persistence may partly be due to its antioxidative effects in the liver.

However, ovarian aging, which is understood as a gradual decrease in both the quantity and quality of the oocytes residing in the follicle as age passes, has also been associated with a reduced antioxidative capacity in the bird and oxidative stress. Researchers have demonstrated that in laying hens of different ages (90, 150, 280 and 580 days) that the antioxidative capacity in the ovaries of birds reduced with age.

The antioxidative capacity in birds is determined by mechanisms involving enzymes such as Superoxidodismutase (SOD), Catalase (CAT), Glutathione Peroxidase (GSH-PX), Glutathione S-transferase (GSH-ST) and biological antioxidants such as Glutathione, vitamins C and E and certain trace minerals.

Further research is required to determine whether Anco FIT Poultry not only has positive effect on the antioxidative capacity of birds in the liver and gut, but also in ovaries.

Conclusion

Anco FIT Poultry in the feed helped to increase laying persistency in the late laying period, which is an important factor for achieving longer laying cycles to produce 500 eggs in 100 weeks. This may partly be due to the proven antioxidative effect of Anco FIT Poultry in the liver of chicken.

Scientific abstracts

Mountzouris et al 2018. Phytogenic premix effects on gene expression of intestinal antioxidant enzymes and broiler meat antioxidant capacity, Proceedings of the EPC 20118

Mountzouris et al 2018. Effects of dietary inclusion level of a phytogenic premix on broiler growth performance, nutrient digestibility, total antioxidant capacity and gene expression of antioxidant enzymes, Proceedings of the IPPE Scientific Poultry Congress 2018

Effects of oxidative stress in response to mycotoxins in dairy cows

Reactive oxygen species (ROS) are normally neutralized by sufficient antioxidant levels in the cow. However, an imbalance between the production of ROS and defense ability of the cow to neutralize ROS causes oxidative stress.

Diseases that can cause significant economic losses in dairy herds, such as subclinical mastitis and ketosis, have been associated with increased markers of oxidative stress in the milk. For example, dairy cows with higher levels of somatic cell counts in milk also showed more signs of oxidative stress, as indicated by levels of malondialdehyde and dinitrophenylhydrazine.

Mycotoxins are known to increase oxidative stress. Therefore, they are also a factor, which can predispose dairy cows to subclinical mastitis and ketosis.

As cases of subclinical mastitis in dairy cows can cost on average $110/cow/year and ketosis $150/cow/year, mycotoxins can be a culprit in significant economic losses in dairy herds.

References

Mostert et al 2018. Estimating the economic impact of subclinical ketosis in dairy
cattle using a dynamic stochastic simulation model, Animal, p 145-154

Ruegg 2005. Premiums, Production and Pails of Discarded Milk How Much Money Does
Mastitis Cost You? University of Wisconsin

Abuelo et al 2015 The importance of the oxidative status of dairy cattle in the periparturient period: revisiting antioxidant supplementation 

Santos and Fink-Gremmels 2014. Mycotoxin syndrome in dairy cattle: characterization and intervention results

Andrei et al 2016. Interrelationships between the content of oxidative markers, antioxidative status, and somatic cell count in cow’s milk. Czech J. Anim. Sci., 61, 2016 (9): 407–413

Watch a short video about this topic at the end of the Monday mycotoxin report below

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How to take your birds from doing great to agile for consistent efficiency

In today’s world layer and broiler producers need to be highly responsive to quickly changing market needs (i.e. agile) and at the same time continuously increase efficiency. This also increases the requirement for robustness and the ability to adapt to nutritional and environmental challenges in birds for reliable performance. Nutritional approaches for gut agility are enabling more consistent efficiency in a sustainable manner.

Genetic progress is alive. Hens have longer and more productive laying cycles and broilers are growing faster and more efficiently. What has not changed is that management of birds is still key to maximize efficiency, health and welfare. To empower birds to live up to new genetic heights, producers need to pay extra attention to nutrition throughout the lifetime of each flock. Nutritional stressors in the diet, such as dietary changes, reduced nutrient digestibility, endotoxins, antinutritional factors and mycotoxins, can undermine consistency in performance in response to diets. Depending on the presence or absence of those stressors the same diet can differ in cost-effectiveness. These stressors are often not easy to control for the nutritionist and are part of the reality that animals are facing in modern production systems.

Ability to adapt

Ability to adapt to different climates, management systems and environmental challenges are sought after traits in today’s birds for commercial production. The ability to adapt to nutritional stressors will have an impact on consistency of performance and efficiency of birds. Hence, what we are looking for in birds is not much unlike a key trait of successful companies in today’s business environment: agility. Agility in this context meaning the capacity to adapt to changes and challenges quickly and efficiently to maintain high performance, efficiency and profitability. We never know what is around the corner, but the ability to adapt will make or break us. It determines sustained success. Taking birds from doing great to agile is a step towards greater robustness, efficiency and performance consistency in birds. This advancement will to some extent be achieved by genetic selection programs, but the faster way is to support it by nutritional means. Nutritional approaches for gut agility in the bird, are designed to empower the bird to adapt to nutritional challenges more efficiently and minimize the negative impact on performance consistency.

Feed efficiency

Reducing antibiotic growth promotors in animal feed calls for the development of new strategies to improve feed efficiency in poultry production systems. Genetic research provides a picture of the basis of feed efficiency at the cellular level. Oxidative stress turned out to be a cellular activity affecting feed efficiency. The studies showed that birds with higher feed efficiency had better mitochondrial function that included less mitochondrial reactive oxygen species (ROS) production and less oxidation of proteins.

More recent studies confirmed that feeding a phytogenic formula containing certain phenolic terpenes and flavonoids to broilers significantly increased the antioxidative capacity
in breast tissue, thigh, liver tissue and certain parts of the gut. There was also a significant positive relationship between antioxidative capacity and feed efficiency. Parameters for ROS scavenging activity, activity of antioxidative enzymes and reduced lipid peroxidation were significantly improved in those tissues. This indicates that feeding strategies including certain phytogenic compounds for increased antioxidative capacity could support feed efficiency in broilers. Improved antioxidative capacity in birds also implies that birds will experience less oxidative stress, which again can reduce inflammatory responses and hence improve energy efficiency. Heat stress, high stocking density and
mycotoxins are known factors which normally lead to increased oxidative stress. Hence, birds with improved antioxidative capacity will also be more resistant to those type of stressors.

Greater laying persistence

By 2020 layers are expected to lay 500 eggs in a single laying cycle of 100 weeks. Genetic companies working towards this goal have been selecting traits that increase the laying persistency of hens. Their motivation for this has been the need to be able to produce eggs in a more sustainable way. In June this year, Germany already reported the first commercial layer flock achieving 500 eggs in 100 weeks in Dekalb laying hens.

Benefits of genetic selection for improved laying persistence and stability in egg quality can only be realized if they are matched by improvements in hen nutrition. There are three important areas that come to mind, when it comes to supporting laying persistence by nutritional means:

1) Careful management of feed/nutrient intake around start of lay and in early laying period
2) Maintaining organs that are important for egg production healthy, e.g. liver
3) Minimizing common stress reactions such as oxidative stress, inflammatory responses and reduction in feed intake to maintain birds healthy and efficient

High performing hens with longer laying cycles are more prone to metabolic disturbances and susceptible to free radical (ROS) damage. This can be justified by the intense metabolism demanded for continuous egg production and environmental stress. Adding certain plant extracts to diets has been shown to improve the antioxidant status in laying hens and can be used to prevent oxidative stress. This then also has the potential to prevent fatty liver hemorrhagic syndrome (FLHS). Fatty liver-hemorrhagic syndrome is a typical liver damage caused by oxidative stress. Laying hens tend to exhibit fatty liver due to the damage caused by free radicals and excessive fat in the liver.

Adding a product including phytogenic components with antioxidative power and designed for gut agility to the late laying period of a commercial ISA Brown parent layer flock, improved the persistency in lay compared to birds on a control diet.

Agile by nutrition

Nutritional concepts designed to support the bird’s capacity to adapt to nutritional challenges and live up to its performance potential, increase the agility of the bird particularly under situations of increased stress. Overall, they are a sustainable alternative to help reduce the use of antibiotics in poultry diets, whilst maintaining robust and efficient birds for consistency in the cost-effectiveness of diets at high performance levels.

 

by Gwendolyn Jones, published in International Poultry Production, August 2018, page 7

Laying persistency – 500 eggs in a single laying cycle in 100 weeks

Laying persistency is a major trait currently being developed further in laying hens. The “long life” layer, which will be capable of producing 500 eggs in a laying cycle of 100 weeks, is on the horizon.

In Europe, the priority is to increase egg production by breeding for increased persistency in lay and stability in egg quality so that the laying cycle of commercial flocks can be extended to 90–100 weeks. Breeding programs are particularly focusing on improving laying persistency and egg quality at the end of the laying cycle.

Reducing cost of egg production

Economic reasons play an important role in taking this decision. It means less feed is required per egg. Keeping the birds longer will decrease the financial contribution of the 18-week-old pullet to the cost per table egg. Maintaining egg size and quality beyond 75 weeks and up to a target of 100 weeks can have a big impact on the profitability of a flock. The time required to reach the economic break-even of the hen has increased from 34 weeks in 1998 to 52 weeks in 2016. This indicates that longer production cycles are imperative in a tough economic climate.

More sustainable egg production

Longer laying cycles lead to a lower carbon footprint per egg. Furthermore, it was calculated that around 1 g of nitrogen could be saved per dozen eggs for an increase of 10 weeks in production. This can significantly reduce the nitrification impact of increasing or maintaining production, which is especially important in nitrate sensitive areas.

More efficient use of resources and reduction of waste will help to reduce the environmental impact of egg production and preserve the environment.

First commercial flock achieving 500 eggs in 100 weeks

Free range laying systems are following the trend for longer laying periods. The case for extending free-range laying cycles.

Actually, the first commercial flock achieving 500 eggs in 100 weeks, was a free-range laying flock and was reported in June 2018. It involved a 40 000 Dekalb White flock based in Germany. A key success factor in this was that the farmer likes to learn new things.

How to get to 500 eggs in 100 weeks

A decline in egg numbers combined with a deterioration in shell quality are the main reasons for currently replacing flocks at or around 72 weeks of age.

The benefits of genetic selection for improved persistency in lay and stability in egg quality can only be realized if they are matched by improvements in hen nutrition and careful monitoring of the effects of this process on the health and welfare of the hens.

To extend the laying cycle of commercial flocks, long-term maintenance of the tissues and organs involved in producing eggs is required.

Motivational video for 500 eggs in 100 weeks

Nutrition supporting laying persistency

Genetic progress and longer production cycles have consequences for nutrition. Benefits of genetic selection for improved laying persistency and stability in egg quality can only be realized if they are matched by improvements in hen nutrition. There are three important areas that come to mind, when it comes to supporting laying persistence by nutritional means:

1) Careful management of feed/nutrient intake around start of lay and in early laying period

2) Maintaining organs that are important for egg production healthy, e.g. liver

3) Minimizing common stress reactions such as oxidative stress, inflammatory responses and reduction in feed intake to maintain birds healthy and efficient

Supporting birds to keep a positive nutrient balance in the first 10 weeks of lay will help provide a reserve for mid/late lay egg output and improved shell quality.

With older birds it is important to maintain liver health. Consider supporting liver function with relevant additives, such as choline and vitamin E. Adding certain plant extracts to diets has been shown to improve the antioxidant status in laying hens and can be used to prevent oxidative stress. This then also has the potential to prevent fatty liver hemorrhagic syndrome (FLHS).

Managing nutritional stressors

Monitoring mycotoxins in feed also plays a key role for liver health in layers, as mycotoxins will cause oxidative stress and damage to the liver. Laying hens are more sensitive than other poultry to mycotoxins. A longer life makes laying hens ideal candidates for chronic mycotoxicosis, caused by continuous exposure to low levels of toxins.

Poor bird health and environmental stress affect egg formation and the ability of the hen to maintain persistency. This can be aggravated by nutritional stressors in the diet, such as dietary changes, reduced nutrient digestibility, endotoxins, antinutritional factors and mycotoxins.

Nutritional concepts designed to support gut agility, increase the bird’s capacity to adapt to nutritional challenges and live up to its performance potential, particularly under situations of increased stress. Overall, they are a sustainable alternative to help reduce the use of antibiotics in poultry diets, whilst maintaining robust and efficient birds for consistency in the cost-effectiveness of diets at high performance levels.

Adding a product including phytogenic components with antioxidative power and designed for gut agility to the late laying period of a commercial ISA Brown parent layer flock, improved the persistency in lay compared to birds on a control diet.

Recommendations from breeding companies

Feeding laying hens to 100 weeks of age – Lohmann

How to feed layers for a longer production cycle and high performance – Dekalb

Progress in Layer Genetics Longer production cycles, a genetic perspective – ISA

Egg producer – monday motivation video with Anco FIT poultry

The modern egg producer is facing tough challenges ahead. More eggs per laying hen (500 eggs in a single laying cycle of 100 weeks by 2020), whilst reducing the use of antibiotics, improving hen care and welfare, introducing cage-free production and preserving the environment.

It requires extra motivation, new and creative thinking to advance egg production. Watch our Monday motivation video for egg producers to boost your motivation and creativity.

Other sources to brighten your day

11 ways to beat the Monday Blues

Chicken song

More information on Anco FIT Poultry

More eggs, greater laying persistency

Available in more than 30 countries

Improved antioxidative capacity for better feed efficiency

Antioxidative power for your antibiotic-free feed strategy

Certain phytogenic feed additives can support high feed efficiency in ABF (antibiotic-free) feeding strategies due to their high antioxidative power. Recent studies indicate a positive relationship between increased anti-oxidative capacity in broilers induced by certain plant extracts in feed and improved feed efficiency.

Link to related article Improve broiler feed efficiency with antioxidative capacity

Agile power of plants

Through a multitude of bioactive substances, with a variety of adaptive properties plants are very well equipped to be polyvalent to different stressors and to prevent their negative impact. Bioactive substances derived from plants have also shown to support humans and animals to adapt to stressors more adequately and help counteract some of the negative physiological and metabolic side effects. Applying the right combination of plant extracts to feed can therefore help the animal become more robust and reach performance potential more efficiently in the face of stressors, including mycotoxins.

Oxidative stress – a common stress reaction

A common reaction to stressors is an increase in Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) on the cellular level. ROS are produced endogenously by normal metabolic processes, but amounts may be increased markedly by certain stressors, including heat and toxins. Deficiencies of natural protective substances or excess exposure to stimulators of ROS production may result in oxidative stress, which occurs when ROS exceed the capacity of antioxidants. Oxidative stress is a major factor related to the development of inflammatory diseases.

Antioxidative power in herbs and spices

The ROS detoxification process in plants is essential for the protection of plant cells against the toxic effect of ROS. Hence many herbs and spices are rich in antioxidative defense mechanisms. The ROS detoxification systems in plants include enzymatic and non-enzymatic antioxidants. Non-enzymatic antioxidants involved include phenolic compounds, flavonoids, alkaloids, tocopherol and carotenoids. These antioxidant defense systems work in concert to control the cascades of uncontrolled oxidation and protect plant cells from oxidative damage.

Phytogenic feed additives based on extracts and material from herbs and spices with high antioxidative power, can be used to support the antioxidative capacity in animals and make them more resistant to stress factors which would otherwise increase oxidative stress and reduce feed efficiency.

Related articles and scientific abstracts

Improve broiler feed efficiency with antioxidative capacity

Evolution in the evaluation of phytogenics

Effects of dietary inclusion level of a phytogenic premix on broiler growth performance, nutrient digestibility, total antioxidant capacity and gene expression of antioxidant enzymes

 

Assessment of phytogenics is evolving – new article published in All About Feed

Assessment of phytogenics is progressing. Compared to 15 years ago, today phytogenics receive much greater attention for the use in animal feed as a tool in strategies designed to reduce the use of antibiotic growth promotors in animal protein production.

However, surveys have shown that many producers and feed manufacturers are still unsure of the efficacy of phytogenics, because of the perception that products are lacking scientific proof.

A new article looks at the progress made in the evaluation of phytogenics from a scientific and a commercial perspective. Find out what Dr. Kostas Mountzouris, Associate Professor of animal nutritional biotechnology at the Agricultural University of Athens in Greece says on this topic from his experience in the research world.

Read the full article by Gwendolyn Jones online via the following link, published by All About Feed: Evolution in the evaluation of phytogenics.

Relevant scientific abstract published by Dr. Kostas Mountzouris

Effects of dietary inclusion level of a phytogenic premix on broiler growth performance, nutrient digestibility, total antioxidant capacity and gene expression of antioxidant enzymes

 

Anco FIT at World Pork Expo 2018 in Iowa

Find out more about Anco FIT at the World Pork Expo 2018 6th-8th of June. Visit the ADM booth V345 at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines, Iowa, USA.

This year the World Pork Expo is celebrating its 30th anniversary. World Pork Expo is the world’s largest pork specific tradeshow and attracts more than 20000 visitors during the three day exhibition. At this year’s event the exhibitor space will be up more than 40,000 square feet from 2017.

ADM is distributor for Anco FIT products in the US and Canada. ADM will have a booth inside the buildings (booth V345) as well as a tent outside. Locate the ADM booth and tent in the link to the floor plan of the trade show below

Talk to Ruben Beltran, product manager at ADM or Gwendolyn Jones from ANCO or any of the sales people present from ADM about Anco FIT. You might also meet a pig farmer already using Anco FIT in the US, who will share his experience with Anco FIT with you.

Link to World Pork Expo 2018 floorplan   Floorplan

Link to information about Anco FIT application in pigs    Anco FIT in pigs

Link to more information about World Pork Expo    World Pork Expo 2018

New article published in Feed Strategy: Improve broiler feed efficiency with antioxidative capacity

Reducing antibiotic growth promotors in animal feed calls for the development of new strategies to improve feed efficiency (FE) in poultry production systems. This represents unique opportunities to explore the biochemical and physiological sources of inter-animal variations associated with FE. Research has demonstrated a genetic link between higher feed efficiency and less mitochondrial ROS (reactive oxygen species) production at the cellular level in broilers.

More recent studies indicate a positive relationship between increased anti-oxidative capacity in broilers induced by certain plant extracts in feed and improved FE.

Read more in this link on page 28: Improve broiler feed efficiency with antioxidative capacity by Gwendolyn Jones, WATT Feed Strategy, April issue