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Helmond (the Netherlands) – Alltech Coppens is the first aquafeed producer to consider net energy in its formulation of aquafeed, going the extra step in order to ensure dependable feed performance, says the feed producer. “The formulation not only neutralises the natural variation of the raw materials in the feed, but also focuses on the differences in the efficiency of the different macronutrients.”

Fixed levels

Most aquafeed companies formulate their feed based on fixed digestible protein and energy levels, which can in part impact the variation in quality of raw materials when fish feeds are formulated in a flexible way. This means that although the crude nutrients (e.g., protein, fat) might differ slightly between batches of feed, the digestible energy on which the feed is formulated will stay the same between batches.

However, recent research from the Alltech Coppens Aqua Centre (ACAC) and associated universities has shown that not all forms of the digestible energy are available to use for growth with the same efficiency. By formulating feeds based on net energy, Alltech Coppens not only looks at digestible energy, but also takes into account the differences in efficiency of the various forms of digestible energy. This will ensure consistent performance between batches of feed.

Digestibility

All raw materials used by Alltech Coppens are always intensively screened at the ACAC. Only raw materials with the highest digestibility are selected. “By implementing this net energy concept, we can better take into account differences in the quality of raw materials throughout the year and therefore ensure more consistent feed quality,” said Patrick Charlton, CEO of Alltech Coppens.

Alltech Coppens has created a selection of feeds that are suitable for the implementation of the net energy concept.

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