SUSTAINABLE FEED INGREDIENTS
The greatest challenge facing the animal feed industry is the need for large volumes of high protein ingredients. Feed producers are turning to plant-based protein to meet the demand. Plant-based protein is sustainable, cheaper and less prone to contaminants than fishmeal and animal/bone meal, and production is scalable.
Soybean meal is the principle source of protein for the feed industry worldwide. Soybeans have high protein content and are a cost-effective source of many amino acids. But conventional soybeans are deficient in some essential amino acids, notably methionine. To meet dietary requirements, methionine is added to nearly all soy-based feed, which increases production costs. Chemically synthesized methionine (or its analog) is the most common form of the supplemental amino acid in feed.
Solution for sustainable nutrients in plant-based feed
Plant Sensory Systems' patented Enhanced Nutrition (EN) technology increases the amino acid content of plant seeds. Soybeans with the EN technology have an increased level of methionine as well as other essential amino acids.
EN1 soybeans have higher levels of methionine and threonine compared with conventional soybeans, and EN2 soybeans contain taurine and higher levels of methionine compared with conventional soybeans. When used for feed, the higher amino acids within the EN soybeans reduce the need for supplementation, which lowers feed production costs.
EN1: HIGH METHIONINE AND THREONINE FOR POULTRY FEED
Poultry feed is the largest feed sector worldwide, with nearly half a billion metric tons produced annually. Soymeal is the primary protein source used in poultry diets. When conventional soymeal is used in poultry feed the essential amino acids, methionine, lysine, and threonine, are added. EN1 soybeans have higher levels of methionine and threonine compared with conventional soybeans. Feed made from the EN1 soybeans would require less supplementation and lower feed production costs.
EN2: TAURINE AND HIGH METHIONINE FOR AQUAFEED
The fastest growing food sector is aquaculture. Aquaculture production is expected to soon surpass capture production.
Producers have traditionally used wild-caught forage fish to meet the protein demand for aquaculture. This practice is not sustainable. Overfishing the small forage fish population jeopardizes the marine ecosystem and has driven up the price of fishmeal.
Many aquafeed producers are using soymeal to partially replace fishmeal. Soy-based protein is cheaper than fishmeal but it is deficient in methionine and lacks taurine, a nutrient critical for most high-value fish. Synthetic taurine and methionine can be added to the feed, but they increase production costs. In addition, the chemical synthesis of taurine and methionine uses hazardous substances and may have environmental and health costs.
The EN2 soybean is an economical, healthy, sustainable, and secure source of protein and the key amino acids, taurine and methionine, for the rapidly growing aquafeed industry (11.4% CAGR from 2013 to 2019).