BASF explores replacement of AGPs in Chinese swine production
BASF has entered into a three and a half year partnership with South China Agriculture University (SCAU) to conduct a large-scale doctoral (PhD) research project.
The collaboration aims to examine the role of organic acids as effective, core eubiotic alternatives for reducing the usage of antibiotic growth promoters (AGPs) in post-weaning piglets.
Eubiotics are feed additives used to maintain an optimal balance of microbiota in the gastrointestinal tract, improving animal health status and growth performance. The project looks deeper into a wide range of eubiotics, and the safety and efficacy of individual or combined eubiotics will also be explored. The information generated by this project will provide feed producers and farmers with greater insight into available eubiotic AGP alternatives and therefore, greater confidence in their selection process.
SCAU was founded in 1909. Located in Guangdong province, it is, today, one of the key agricultural universities in China, and is highly regarded as a prominent swine research institute.
"BASF is known as a responsible supplier of high-quality feed additives and effective feed solutions for balanced and sustainable animal growth. By collaborating with BASF in the field of AGPs replacement research, we hope to explore new ways of nurturing top professional talents, while developing a practical and effective feed technology. I believe the outcome of this project will advance animal product safety and quality which will, in turn, improve human health and wellness," said Professor Wutai Guan from the Animal Nutrition Research Institute of SCAU.
As an innovation driven company, BASF is active in the field of eubiotics, th company says. In the EU markets, the banning of in-feed AGPs over the last two decades has led swine producers to look into organic acids, probiotics, prebiotics and essential oils, as eubiotic alternatives for AGPs. Using organic acids as feed additives is very common in Europe and the advantages they achieve are well recognized in the industry. BASF's Animal Nutrition team has also provided coaching to pig producers on a variety of initiatives to reduce AGP usage in China and other countries.
"Through this project, we hope to discover ways to achieve greater improvement in animal health and production with organic acid-based alternatives in the post-AGP era," said Stephen Crisp, regional head of BASF Animal Nutrition Asia Pacific. He continued: "In addition, the project's outcome, in combination with optimising farm management, including the improvement of biosecurity status and precision nutrition, could warrant healthier and more productive animals, which would in turn significantly reduce usage of antibiotics."