News and analysis on the global poultry
and animal feed industries.

Animal Nutrition Views

Ioannis Mavromichalis, Ph.D., gives his views on poultry, pig and dairy nutrition based on his experience as a nutrition consultant with clients around the world.

Think twice before you hire an animal nutrition consultant

You need an internal person who will take ownership of the problem/project and become responsible to see it to its conclusion before you hire an external adviser.
I have been in this business long enough that I have obtained a clear enough picture to know when to say no, and this story explains why sometimes it is better to lose a customer rather than risk your business. 
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Getting used to expensive vitamins — time to act is now

Vitamins used to be cheap, but this is last year’s news; we must now act to ensure vitamin feeding cost remains reasonable as vitamins will remain expensive for the foreseeable future.
Today, we see vitamins like E and A being dramatically expensive. Some believe their prices will come down, but others in the know realize that the few players who control the market will not be happy to see low prices again.
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Vitamins A and E, now is not time to panic!

If you are using high levels of these vitamins in your animal feeds, a quick look at their current prices will certainly cause a wave of anxiety, if not panic; but despair not, there is a remedy.
During times of crisis, such as the current one on vitamins A and E, it is always not a good idea to start thinking how to rationalize vitamin levels (typical panic reaction).
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Animal feed ingredients rich in valine and other BCAA

If feed-grade valine is expensive, other branched-chain amino acids (BCAA) do not even exist in commercial forms, and thus, natural ingredients are needed to supply extra BCAA when requirement is high.
Following the blog from last week, I thought it would make sense to talk about which natural ingredients can be used as a source of branched-chain amino acids.
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Animal nutrition: What do you know about valine?

Branched-chain amino acids became better-known when high valine levels were erroneously believed to benefit sows, but there is more to these amino acids that needs clarification.
Of the 700 amino acids that exist in nature, only 20 alpha-amino acids are used by living organisms for protein synthesis.
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Pop quiz on animal feed immunoglobulins

If anyone ever brings up the topic of immunoglobulins, here’s a quick cheat sheet to keep you ahead.
Immunoglobulins in animal feeds are nothing new. We have been providing them through milk, animal plasma and eggs in one way or another, even without our knowledge.
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