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Enzymes in poultry feed could improve performance

The feed additive can increase nutrient digestibility and have antimicrobial properties.

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Broiler Chicken Eating
Iaroslav Konnikov |

Incorporating enzymes into poultry diets helps improve the efficacy of nutrient capture from feed, which boosts feed conversation ration and enhances bird performance.

“In poultry production, enzymes bring benefits in different ways,” Dipak Roda, Vice President of Market & Business Development, Enzyme Innovation, said.

“The first and foremost is that an enzyme offers flexibility to formulate the feed which is very important nowadays. With the rising costs of feed, people are looking at alternative feedstuffs to use, but still want to manage the productivity.”

Increase digestibility

In addition to flexibility in formulation, enzymes can help reduce feed cost by increasing the digestibility of cereals such as corn and soy.

“If you look at the feed components, there are so many ingredients that get into the animal’s body that the animals are not able to digest,” explained Roda. “These ingredients just pass into the gut undigested, which can cause inflammation” and could lead to conditions such as necrotic enteritis.

Corn and soy are common ingredients and energy sources in poultry feed, but non-starch polysaccharides (NSP) within them can limit digestibility. Adding enzymes like xylanase to poultry feed can help break down the NSP to provide energy to the birds.

Enzymes can also improve the digestibility of phytate-bound phosphorous.

Phosphorus is stored in plant tissues as phytic acid, which binds to minerals and amino acids in the body and becomes unavailable to the animal. Phytase enzymes reduce phosphorus excretion.

Antimicrobial activity

Some enzymes have antimicrobial properties where they can aid immunity in poultry.

“Antibiotic-free meat is a big challenge because without the use of antibiotics managing the productivity, it is another thing that everyone has to deal with,” said Roda. “Enzymes offer great support to improve the productivity even with reduced use or the absence of antibiotics.”


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