March 13, 2018

Highlights of the Gary Allee Symposium

Highlights of the Gary Allee Symposium: Science in Practice – Revisited

By: Dr. Emily Taylor

Invited speakers at the Gary Allee Symposium at the ADSA/ASAS Midwest Meeting tackled the symposium’s theme: Science in Practice.

Dr. Dean Boyd, The Hanor Company, Inc., began the symposium discussing the “Advances with Exogenous Dietary Enzymes to Reduce Diet Cost and Improve Viability in Growing Pigs.” The National Pork Boards’ (NPB) Animal Science committees’ mission was to evaluate the use of exogenous dietary enzymes as a means to reduce diet cost and degrade anti-nutrients. Dr. Boyd described their priorities which included: 1) Increase nutrient extraction (enzyme processing), 2) Identify enzymes to improve use of low-energy ingredients (low starch, high NDF) and 3) Identify functional ingredients to mitigate disease impact on viability and the feed conversion ratio. He reviewed multiple studies which evaluated each of the priorities listed by the NPB.  Overall, he provided ways in which the use of exogenous dietary enzymes (coupled with these high fiber ingredients) may improve the viability of the growing pigs and ultimately reduce the cost associated with feeding.

Dr. Gains, Maschhoffs LLC, continued the discussion of fibrous feed ingredients in his presentation, “Practical Formulation Using Corn Coproducts and Other Alternative Ingredients – New Research, Industry Trends and Research Gaps.” Dr. Gains reiterated the need for lowering the overall feed costs in conjunction with the use of high fibrous feeds. He highlighted the need to evaluate each feeds (specifically corn coproducts) nutritive value and utilize them as individual feeds due to the variation of these products now available. Because of these variations, it was proposed that the validity of published energy values of these corn coproducts may be further scrutinized due to these variations. As a conclusion, Dr. Gains described the need to address many facets of the industry and the impacts that corn coproducts may have on them (feed mill, farm and packer considerations).

Dr. van Milgen, INRA, began his presentation by discussing how energy is one of the most costly components of feed and ideally, we need to find a compromise between both value and requirement. The discussion of fiber fractions and its energy value was continued with the understanding that increases in fiber (NDF) will ultimately decrease energy digestibility. Ranking of ingredients based on their energy values can be heavily dictated by which energy value you are using. Therefore, Dr. van Milgen explained the “Whys and Why Nots” for using the Net Energy value. He discussed the research application by describing his “no one size fits all” theory. You must first observe the variations in feed, animals and environment, understand the mechanism of these variations, predict interactions by using data derived models and control what is put into practice.

Dr. Nathan Horn, BioMatrix International, used his talk “The Overused Phrase “Gut Health “ in Practice: What it Means, How to Measure It, Translation to Applied Metrics, Research Direction, and Gaps” to relay a message that there is a real need to use molecular research to fix or answer questions from and applied setting, while discussing the microbiota and its relationship with animal performance. Dr. Horn reviewed gut health, as well as, the in-vitro and in-vivo models that can be used to evaluate our research questions. He acknowledged the limitations of in-vitro research without the practical and applied portion to bring it full circle. To achieve this goal he pointed out the importance of understanding the basic physiological systems and how models can improve the relationship of applied and molecular research.

Look for a link by email to access the talks virtually in the coming days.