UK - The second day of the Turkey Science and Production Conference took nutrition as its main theme, with two presentations under the broad umbrella of sustainability, reports Jackie Linden.
First speaker of the day, Andrew Robertson of Biomin GmbH, spoke on 'The battle against pathogens in antibiotic-reduced environment'. He pointed out total antibiotic use in the EU, poultry account for only about 20 per cent; there is no breakdown of the total for turkey. Mr Robertson went on to explain some of the alternatives to antibiotics for poultry - prebiotics/probiotics, phytogenic compounds and acidifiers.
Alternative feed ingredients - to maize and soybeans - can affect poultry in terms of performance, bone development and and wet litter, said Professor Sally Noll of the University of Minnesota. These effects are related to their electrolyte balance, and she presented her research which sheds light on the effects of electrolyte balance in turkeys.
From AB Vista UK, Rob ten Doeschate, outlined the effects of phytate in turkeys in terms of its binding of phosphorus and other dietary nutrients. He presented the growing evidence for superdosing with phytase for its non-phosphoric effects.
In feed formulation for turkeys, the choice of dietary energy and amino acid can impact the performance of the birds and also the cost of production in unexpected ways, demonstratedDr Greg Page of Nutreco Agsearch in Canada.
Dr Natalia Soares of Huvepharma NV explained how the right choice of xylanase feed enzyme can affect turkey nutrition and health.
The first research results were presented on a novel benzoic acid product in turkeys by Dr Sven Keller of Novus in Germany.
Moving the focus of the conference to sustainability was Dr Valentin Kremer of Aviagen Turkeys. He explained the role of the primary breeder in reducing the environmental impacts of turkey meat production, balancing this with health and welfare implications.
Last but by no means least in the programme was an assessment of the environmental impact of turkey production systems in the UK. Comparing four systems - stags and hens in controlled-environment and naturally ventilated houses - Dr Ilias Kyriazakis of the University of Newcastle reported that he and his colleagues found no significant effects of production system. Feed intake and composition had the greatest impact on Global Warming Potential in his study.
All these papers were presented at the 8th Turkey Science and Production Conference, held at Carden Park Hotel near Chester in north-west England and organised by Dr James Bentley of Turkey Times.
Go to our report on the first day of this meeting by clicking here.