There are different types of mycotoxins of importance for poultry production, with worldwide distribution. The most commonly detected mycotoxins are aflatoxins (AF), trichothecenes (T-2, HT-2, DON), fumonisins (FUM) and zearalenones (ZEA) – 2. Nearly 70% of the total production of foodgrains in India is retained at farm level where the storage conditions enhance the chances of mould development and thereby mycotoxin production – 3.
Mycotoxins can occur individually or in combination (co-occurrence), causing synergistic, additive, or antagonistic effects. Thereafter, it is recommended to prevent mycotoxicosis.
Commercial mycotoxin binders are primarily based on adsorbents (binding of mycotoxins in the intestinal tract). Some mycotoxins, the high-polar ones (AF, FUM) are easily bound by clays. The non-polar mycotoxins (ZEA) can be bound by yeast-derived products. However, complete adsorption of some mycotoxins (e.g. trichothecenes) is not possible. Therefore, to prevent the growth of mould in stored feed, to tackle the occurrence of difficult binding mycotoxins and, thereby, to protect tissues impaired by mycotoxicosis (e.g. liver and intestine), a broad spectrum solution is advisable. Excential Toxin Plus (ETP) is one of the best binding mycotoxin mixtures – 4, consisting of five synergistically working ingredients, with inhibition of mould growth, adsorption properties, support of intestinal integrity and hepatoprotection.
With the aim to evaluate the effects of ETP on the performance of broilers (Senegal) and layers (Togo), two studies were conducted by Orffa in collaboration with two universities in Africa.
The mycotoxin binder improves the zootechnical performance of broilers – a study in Senegal
A 42-day study was conducted in collaboration with the School of Veterinary Medicine of the University of Dakar, using a total of 600 day-old Cobb 500 broilers. The birds were fed a corn-groundnut meal-based diet. Feed and water were provided ad libitum. The experiment was divided into two periods: day 0-10 (adaptation) and day 11-42 (experiment). On day 11, the birds were randomly assigned to one of the three treatments (4 pens/treatment, 50 birds/pen) according to the content of ETP in the feed (0, 1 or 5 kg/ton). The supplemented groundnut meal was selected based on its high aflatoxin concentration (160.4 μg aflatoxin/kg). Supplementation of 1 kg/t of ETP resulted in an improvement of +2.4% in final body weight (p < 0.1) and -5.6% in feed conversion ratio (FCR) (Table 1). The high dosage of the mycotoxin binder (5kg/t) did not affect final body weight but reduced FCR by -4.0%. It is expected that in commercial circumstances, where the levels of AF in the feed are higher and different mycotoxins co-occur, the effects of ETP will be more apparent.