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SilvaLab: Cutting Edge Science Support from Silvateam

Published on: 2/6/2019
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The development of antibacterial resistance is an issue of global concern. Not only human beings have experienced it, but it has also taken relevance in the veterinary sector.

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) mentioned in different reports that the antibacterial agents play a key role in the treatment of animal diseases. Unfortunately, antibacterial agents are often used improperly to treat and prevent diseases in livestock, aquaculture and agricultural production. This is then associated with the possibility of the emergence and spread of antimicrobial-resistant microorganisms.

The estimated global consumption of antimicrobials in livestock is more than 60,000 tons per year. With the demand for food products of animal origin projected to grow steadily in the coming years, the use of antimicrobials will continue to increase.

The improper use of Antibiotics as Growth Promoters (AGPs) is what the animal health and nutrition world has warned against for decades, being the main concerns related to their ability to generate resistance or others unexpected counterproductive effects. Multiple theories have been promoted with the purpose of reducing the use of antibiotics, and in recent times many food chain multinationals are taking measures in this sense, influencing and fostering the trend of increasing awareness regarding the threat of overusing antibiotics in animal nutrition.

A valid market alternative to AGPs is represented by plant extracts, tannins, polyphenols, essential oils and other natural substances continuously raising more and more interest.

Silvateam has therefore given birth to SilvaLab, a laboratory-based service focused on researching, designing and developing natural alternative growth promoters to AGPs. Furthermore, this service provides the tests to allow the players within the animal production sector to evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of these solutions.

SilvaLab is endowed with the appropriate equipment and highly qualified technical personnel that is able to carry out all these activities professionally, while meeting the highest standards in terms of biosecurity, Good Management Practices (GMP) and Good Lab Practices (GLP).

The results of these deep assessments serve as a useful tool to set the application instructions and recommended dosages for all the growth promotors under evaluation.

The services offered in terms of analysis include:

  • Determination of ammonia levels in a target barn.
  • Physical evaluation of selected birds.
  • Assessment of weight (gain or loss).
  • Mortality rates monitoring.
  • Necropsy of birds (focus on histomorphometry and histopathology).
  • Litter quality assessment.
  • In vitro sample analysis, using MIC50, (isolates of bacteria as Salmonella and C. perfringens, or indicator bacteria as Enterococcus spp and E. coli).
  • Metagenomic analysis.
Figure 1: Technicians carrying out field and laboratory tests.

Based on these parameters, SilvaLab staff is able to issue a presumptive diagnosis, which allow to monitor and take important nutritional decisions, thanks to an average of continuous assessments. Therefore, it is of vital importance that such assessments are carried without interruptions, in order to ensure the best diagnosis and efficacy of the treatment used.

SilvaLab is based in Peru and Argentina, locations in which a complete staff of technicians, veterinarians, nutritionists and pathologists are focused on the development of defining alternative solutions to AGPs as well as the correct tests to carry out reliable assessments. All of these permits to maximise the effectiveness, efficiency security of these natural and growth promoters, newcomers in the animal health and nutrition market.

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