Reducing feed costs with acidifier

Published on: 3/3/2008
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Feed prices jumped to the record high and further increase is on the horizon. There are several reasons for these circumstances. First of all it is a distinction between diminishing supplies and increasing demand. Diminishing supplies are mainly due to bad crops in many producing countries. Increasing demand is due to corn use for food and feed industries and bioethanol production. The discrepancy between supplies and demand is nor expecting to diminish in the future.

Livestock producers were already facing heavy losses due to the high cost of production. Unfortunately, there is no way to pass on the additional increased feed cost. Possibilities to improve the situation are requested. One of the possibilities is to reduce feed consumption but to keep animal performance at an optimum. Feed conversion ratio is one of the main factors delivering profitability. Improving FCR leads to cost savings.

The benefit of acidifiers in poultry production demonstrates following calculation. Data is based on the 5% FCR improvement, which is an average benefit of world wide use of Biotronic®, acidifier of BIOMIN, Austria

All parameters are constant, except the FCR, which has an influence on feed intake and therefore on feed savings. For the clear view further benefits of acidifiers were not considered in the calculation.

Table 1: Effect of acidifier in poultry production

As shown in Table 1, total feed intake of broilers in the trial group with acidifier was decreased by 1 854 kg, because of reduced FCR from 1.80 to 1.71.

Feed prices differ depending on the country, but an increase in price is worldwide. Table 2 shows the difference in cost savings due to reduced feed intake at two price levels. The two price levels are the market prices of feed for poultry in December 2006 and December 2007.

Table 2: Benefit of acidifier at different levels of feed costs

In both cost regimens, the inclusion of acidifier reduced the total feed cost per 10 000 birds. It is evident that, as the feed cost increases, the benefit of acidifier increases markedly (Figure 2). It can be seen in the example that feed costs increased by 36% but cost savings due to incorporation of acidifier increased by 214%!

Figure 2: Cost savings due to use of acidifier for 10 000 broilers at different levels of feed cost

As mentioned, feed costs vary depending on the country and there will be further price increases. Therefore one more example (Figure 3), shows the influence of different feed cost levels on cost savings. Data for calculations were the same as shown in the example above (10 000 broilers, FCR improved from 1.8 to 1.71)

Figure 3: Influence of feed cost increase on cost savings


Acidifiers markedly improve FCR and therefore help farmers to save money. Feed cost calculations incorporating FCR optimizing due to feed supplementation with acidifier highlights this effect. The noticeable outcome of this calculation is a profit difference between higher and lower feed cost. The multiple effects of cost savings were observed. This means the higher the feed costs are the higher the benefit is due to the use of acidifiers.

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