Evonik launches new gut health concept

Gut Health Solutions, part of Sustainable Healthy Nutrition, has developed a new gut health concept for broilers, layers, and swine that combines our amino acid and probiotic portfolios with our amino services programme, initiating a holistic view on animal health and livestock production.

This concept, aimed at linking gut health to economic success by serving customer needs along the value chain of livestock production, will launch to customers this year. Our focus is on economically, ecologically and socially sustainable animal protein production.

To develop sustainable healthy nutrition, we understand the system is increasingly complex and highly dependent on various parameters. The concept focus for poultry lies on the complex and multi-factorial issue: dysbiosis.

The gut health concept will focus on the multi-factorial issue of dysbiosis. Photo: Evonik
The gut health concept will focus on the multi-factorial issue of dysbiosis. Photo: Evonik

Main causes of dysbiosis

Dysbiosis is defined as an undesirable alteration of the microbiota resulting in an imbalance between protective and harmful bacteria. Though, looking deeper into the main causes of dysbiosis leads us to various conditions that are not necessarily related to particular bacteria. One of the main causes of dysbacteriosis are antibiotics, even when used for curative purposes. Antibiotics can cause dysbiosis and lead to decreased growth performance in livestock. The second major cause are pathogenic bacteria (Salmonella spp. Escherichia coli, Clostridium perfringen) and parasites (Eimeria spp).

The new gut health concept

Other parameters that have a major impact on intestinal homeostasis are nutritional factors like feed contaminants, an unbalanced diet (for example, containing a high amount of protein), and antinutritional factors (high fibre content, high trypsin inhibitors). From a technological point of view, we can identify that feed structure and particle size play an important role in intestinal disbalance.

There is also the impact of environmental condition, for example heat stress, on the microbiota and its maturation. All of these parameters are detailed and discussed in the light of the new gut health concepts developed by Evonik and appropriate solutions are proposed to mitigate the impact of this multi-factorial issue. All solutions presented are supported by studies conducted with external partner universities and research facilities.

Ultimately, the concept should demonstrate to the customer the advantages of supporting the intestinal ecosystem with solutions from Evonik. The combination of products and services indicates a complementary and holistic approach to tackle challenges and contribute towards sustainable animal protein production.

Invaluable solutions and improvements

The solution offered includes services allowing a quick assessment of the feed ingredients quality using innovative technologies, nutritional concepts for an improved production and sustainability, while maintaining a high level of animal performance. In combination, studies are investigating products from the gut health solution portfolio, including feed additives, and the latest probiotic for water lines.

The advantage of this new product formulation is that it is quick and easy to handle, and can be supplemented at short notice to support birds when unexpected challenges occur.

Ecobiol Fizz is quick and easy to handle and can be supplemented at short notice if needed. Photo: Evonik
Ecobiol Fizz is quick and easy to handle and can be supplemented at short notice if needed. Photo: Evonik

Results showed a homogenous distribution of the probiotic along and between drinking lines, but also during different supplementation periods when water consumption was lowest in the starter period. These resulted in improved performance compared to the control animals (without probiotic in water).

There were also improvements in hock burn and pododermatitis scores by about 5% in all three treatment houses, and less factory rejects compared to the control. It is possible to attribute the improvement in pododermatitis and hock levels in the treatment houses to lower moisture in the litter, something indicated by the decrease of the ration of feed:water.

References are available on request