A team of nine researchers and commercial practitioners led by USSEC consultant Gonzalo G. Mateos shared their cutting edge knowledge with a large group of U.S. Soy customers from Poland, Romania, Russia, and Turkey, who gathered at the Universidad Politecnica de Madrid (UPM) for in-class training sessions over the course of several days.
Most of the participants represented feed manufacturing companies, such as Wipasz, Poland’s third largest, and poultry production integrators such as the Russian giant broiler company, Cherkizovo, but a couple of them came from research institutions that serve commercial poultry production, like the Russian Poultry Research & Technology Institute.
The teaching program began with Professors Mateos’ (Spain) and Svihus’ (Norway) explanations of bird anatomy and physiology and how that knowledge is used in modern poultry nutrition and practical feeding systems. It set the base for going through macromineral nutrition of broilers that included the utilization of enzymes in poultry nutrition, all delivered by Dr. Roselina Angel (U.S.).
Protein and amino acid requirements, presented by Dr. Jan van der Kliss (Netherlands), were followed by energy requirements in the broilers. It set the stage to explain the various quality challenges that poultry growers may encounter with their soybean meal source and the importance of proper KOH and PDI, as tests showing if heat treatment was done properly.
Two speakers talked about the new look at the particle size in the feed, pelleting versus mesh form and the use of whole wheat in poultry diets that naturally rolled out into wet litter problems in the broilers. The audience heard that mash diets are often fed to broilers from their 21st day of age on to control diarrhea; before that day, wet litter is not usually a problem. Dr. Mateos also reviewed the use of fiber in poultry diets.
The block on feed additives involved two other experts. Dr. Pedro Medel (Spain) introduced the (mostly) young audience to EU legislation and practical approaches to additives, while Dr. Gerardo Santoma (Spain) explained the use of probiotics, prebiotics, and essential oils. Trace elements, quelates, antioxidants, pigments, betaine, and choline were next to have been described from practical feeding systems’ point of view.
Using the instructions worked out by Cobb Espaniole, Dr. J.C. Abad (Spain) went through a broiler breeder feeding program, a subject that is not often presented. The charts and pictures from the farms helped the speaker to get his point across to the audience.
Nutrition of pullets and laying hens covered on the third day of the training session by Dr. Mateos was another hot topic that expanded into the area of production of table eggs and their quality. Due to the growing interest of supermarket chains and some consumers in Europe, the training program could not exclude the issue of feeding hens on the floor and their access to park or free walking area.
“While it was a great training event, it is a pity we did not have more time with these international experts to cover in-depth the topics like electrolyte balance and/or utilization of additives,” concluded Mr. Adrian Dąbrowski, a young technologist from Wipasz feed company in Poland.
The USSEC-Europe staff is discussing poultry production and nutrition activities in Northeast and Southeast European subregions, plus Russia and Turkey in the next fiscal year that would follow up on the reported Madrid course.