Use of preservatives in ruminants
ALTERNATIVE TO ORGANIC ACIDS
Preservatives are substances that protect the food against the deteriorating effects of microorganisms or their metabolites.
The traditionally used preservatives, organic acids, are used for their bacteriostatic and fungistatic properties and can be used in two forms: pure organic acid or as salts of organic acids.
Among the most used organic acids are propionic acid and formic acid with a different action spectrum, the former is more effective against fungi and the other against bacteria. This fact, leads to have to combine their use, there are more acids but many of them have a weaker activity.
What are the disadvantages of organic acids?
1- They are corrosive and difficult to handle: This is caused by their high reactivity, reason why sometimes they are administered in the form of salts or coated. However, these formats need a higher level of inclusion in the food to be equally effective.
2- Short-term effect: After a while, the effectiveness of organic acids is impaired by the recycling of some microorganisms to obtain energy, causing the restoration of PH favoring its growth and reproduction again.
3 – Limited action spectrum: Each organic acid has a different action spectrum, as mentioned above, so if it is not clear the source of contamination requires a combination of different organic acids.
Alternative to organic acids based on cimenol ring
There are other options for the conservation of feed and raw materials, such as the use of preservatives based on natural extracts that are combined with the use of weaker organic acids originally used as acidifiers.
The plants have different components with microbiocidal, aromatic or flavoring functions. The Cimenol ring is a molecule that acts as a microbiocide and is effective against both different fungi, bacteria and yeasts. This activity can be transferred to preserve raw materials and compound feed for animal production.
In vitro study in concentrated feed for ruminants:
Organic acids versus natural product based on cimenol ring.
A trial has been carried out to compare the efficacy of the natural product based on cimenol ring with respect to the use of traditional organic acids, both in acid form and in salt form.
The study compares the following groups:
– Batch1: Uncontaminated feed
– Batch 2: Ammonium propionate and propionic acid at a rate of 400 g per tonne
– Batch 3: Products with cimenol ring at the rate of 400 grams per ton.
A fungal and yeast count was then made after application of the products for 2 weeks, also compared to a control group.
The administration of the natural preservative shows a reduction in both fungal and yeast counts compared to the other two groups, and the total elimination of yeasts after administration is emphasized.
Analyzing the results of the test, it can be concluded that this product is an effective alternative to organic acids to reduce the amount of microorganisms in the food.
Dra Núria Martín Gairal
Veterinary Veterinary of technical and registration department at Biovet S.A. Laboratories