The Feedtech-Croptech Asia 2011 Conference, held March 9 by VNU in association with WATT, during VIV Asia in Bangkok, will focus on future trends in animal feeds. With grain prices soaring, the discussion will include the potential for using alternative ingredients to manage feed costs.

Presentations by guest speakers Dr. Budi Tangendjaja, U.S. Grains Council, and Dr Chinnadurai Sugumar, Kemin Industries, will focus on whether agricultural co-products or other crop products might be used instead of conventional energy and protein sources in Asian feeds for poultry and pig.

Alternative ingredients offer more options and therefore more control over the future when supplies of the main grains or proteins may be limited, these presenters point out. Often the candidates for consideration are available locally at relatively low prices, although they tend to be rather bulky and therefore transportation costs might be higher. Moreover, their quality is inconsistent at times and certain anti-nutritional factors may be present. Palatability and digestibility must be taken into account, as well as the potential risk of contamination.

However, positive aspects include not only a lower cost, but also the fact that these co-products do not generally find a use in human food. To assist poultry and pig feed formulation there is a growing amount of knowledge on where and how such alternative feed ingredients can be employed without depressing the performance of the animals or birds, together with the arrival of technology to overcome their disadvantages and allow higher inclusion rates.