The quality of the trace element sources is essential. This includes the purity or concentration of the mineral in the product, contamination with heavy metals and with dioxins, and the handling properties of the product.
Producers of trace element sources need to follow quality standards such as GMP+ or FAMI-QS. Implementing strict monitoring programmes and regular analysis of the products is the best way to ensure high-quality and safe products.
Smart hydroxy trace minerals
Orffa’s smart hydroxy trace minerals are inorganic sources of trace elements with a stable molecular structure and unique covalent bonds. These smart bonds release the trace elements at the right place and the right time and prevent problems with reactivity and complex formation, leading to optimal availability for the animal.
For ruminants, trace elements with low reactivity in the rumen is required for excellent fibre fermentation and volatile fatty acid production by the rumen microbiota. In in vitro trials, the low reactivity of Orffa’s Excential smart hydroxy trace minerals was demonstrated. In a simulation of rumen fermentation, the influence of different sources of copper and zinc were tested.
As presented in Table 1, the hydroxy trace elements were the only source that did not influence total volatile fatty acid (TVFA) production during fermentation. For the sulphate and three tested organic sources (glycinate, amino acid complex, and proteinate), a significant decrease in TVFA production was observed compared to the non-supplemented control, indicating inhibition of fermentation by trace element reactivity.
Supporting rumen fermentation
Under practical circumstances, impaired efficacy of the rumen microbiota by toxic antimicrobial effects of soluble, reactive copper and zinc will result in lower ruminal fibre fermentation, as well as lower animal performance and health.
As demonstrated in this trial, smart hydroxy trace minerals are the safest trace mineral choice for excellent rumen fermentation. The low reactivity of this trace element source was not only evident in the unaffected TVFA production, but also in the stable VFA composition. For the level of acetic (HAc), butyric (HBu) and branched chain volatile fatty acids (BCVFA), no differences could be observed between the control or hydroxy trace mineralsupplemented group.
The level of propionic acid (HPr) showed a very small increase when hydroxy trace elements were supplemented during fermentation. This can be considered beneficial, as propionic acid is a precursor for gluconeogenesis.
A superior product for the market
Low reactivity is the first key feature of smart hydroxy trace elements. The slow release of active elements also contributes to optimal availability. As a result, hydroxy trace minerals show higher rumen fermentation, dry matter digestibility, milk production, health (especially in terms of claws) and fertility in cows.
Purity and safety are the second key quality feature distinguishing smart hydroxy trace minerals from other common organic and inorganic trace mineral sources. The purity or concentration of minerals in the range of smart hydroxy products is above 50% for copper, zinc and manganese (each batch is analysed). The level of heavy metal and dioxin contamination remains far below legal limits, and a low dust level also assures the high-quality handling properties of the product.
When supplementing feed with trace elements, it is vital to choose a high-quality trace mineral source to guarantee the best supply of these essential nutrients for the animal. Smart hydroxy trace minerals provide these nutrients to animals in a safe and optimal way.