Modern livestock production is the key driver of the world’s food supply. In conjunction with this, feed safety and its related subjects, are of growing concern on a global remit. This concerns both humans and animals. One of those related subjects is the Anti-Microbial Resistance (AMR), and strategies around it to reduce the use of antibiotic treatments.
Social developments, the sense of responsibility, and consumer-driven demand puts the spotlight on some aspects such as sustainability, animal welfare, farm-to-fork clean animals; and along with them, the responsible use of conventional treatments.
Nowadays livestock is highly productive, but also highly susceptible to stress, very susceptible to diseases, and they can perform only under good management practices and protection programs. Not only the feed is a crucial point in improving zootechnical parameters, but important factors such as vaccinations, ensuring a good start in life, supplying good quality water and air, handling humidity and ammonia, and creating and maintaining gut health are all critical points in the process of ensuring performance and at the same time helping to decrease Veterinary interventions. Especially in today’s dynamics with pressure on raw materials, costs, logistics limitations, and availability of solutions; two main subjects, feed, and water, play a crucial role in maintaining a profitable and safe livestock production.
Enterobacteria mitigation, where does it start, and where does it stop?
One of the main reasons for antibiotic use in poultry remains to be enteric-related infections, followed by locomotor reasons. Which are both correlated with enterobacteria pressure in the feed, water, and environment. With modern milling technologies and heat treatments, maybe the level of enterobacteria brought to animals via the feed may appear to be under control. Nevertheless, the environment, and especially water can be a primary source of contamination risks. Poultry farms have optimal conditions along with the water systems for biofilm to form, and for microorganisms to multiply.
Water: the most important nutrient
The role of water in the metabolism is crucial as first, it is essential; second, it is a vessel for the nutrients; and finally, it takes part in the thermoregulation of animals. Animals consume water continuously along the day, whereas they eat-in meals, or in portions at certain times of the day. This makes water a critical point in the hazard analysis, especially for prevention strategies. The quality of the water can be a challenging subject to manage by means of physicochemical properties. For example, total dissolved solids, nitrites, nitrates, sulphates, or hardness. However, controlling microbiological contamination and the prevention of biofilm is a rather less challenging issue, especially with smart and economical tools.
The power of organic acids
Conventional solutions such as hydrogen peroxide, or free chlorine have their pros and contras when it comes to controlling and decreasing microorganisms. Optimal activity is linked to precise dosing, and to some physical conditions of the water as well. Especially chlorine will work better if the pH level of the water is between 4-6. In some farm conditions, especially when groundwater is being used, the water hardness and pH may not be very suitable for this application alone.
Organic acids in water are a very convenient, economical, and versatile way to address water quality issues caused by microbiological contamination. They can assist in decreasing pH, thus potentially helping to prevent biofilm formation which in turn may counteract bacterial growth in the water. Moreover, their activity in the crop and gizzard may bring additional benefits, such as aiding digestion, supporting retention times in the gizzard, and helping the animals to fight against transient bacteria.
Understanding each organic acid and its chemical properties plays a big role in choosing the right product that will be fit for its purpose. The molecular size of the organic acid, its ability to penetrate cell walls or membrane, and its pKa value are the most important ones. Choosing the synergistic molecules that complement each other will ensure a user-friendly product, that will be effective in lower dosages, with maximum action.
ProPhorce™ water solutions: Specific needs, specific products
The properties of an ideal acidifier are:
- Easily reaches target pH (4-4.2 for poultry)
- Safe for animals and safe for equipment when used at the correct dosage
- Synergistic blend of active ingredients for all-round control against bacteria, molds, and yeasts
- Benefits beyond acidification, such as added antibacterial properties for optimal hygiene
- Aiding gut health and performance through additional components
Perstorp has a range of products designed for your needs. Like an umbrella protecting you from the rain, these products can help protect your animals from unclean water. Depending on your needs you can choose anything from a standard product such as ProPhorce™ Classic NC to a highly innovative new product such as the ProPhorce™ Exclusive NC that even assists gut health.