Q&A for the FeedNavigator webinar on 11 April

Thank you for joining our webinar on "How to leverage the value of analytics in feed production" at FeedNavigator. We appreciate your engagement and interest. Please find our detailed responses to the questions asked during the session. 

What type of test is used to determine if the corn is too hard dried?

Evonik has developed NIR calibrations to estimate the degree of heat damage and to adjust amino acid digestibility in corn samples using the patented concept of Processing Conditions Indicator (PCI) based on protein solubility in KOH, reactive lysine, and the ratio of reactive lysine to total lysine.

Is AMINONIR RED applicable for rumen-protected Soybean meal?

The development of AMINONIR RED focused on the impact of processing for monogastric animals. The processes used to create rumen-protected soybean meal might deviate from those processes used to produce soybean meal for monogastric animals. As a result, the NIR calibrations might not be applicable to rumen-protected soybean meal. Therefore, it is necessary to test the suitability of the specific product to the AMINONIR RED calibrations.

Sometimes samples of full-fat soybean will fail the “cook test” through the Soy Check reagent but pass under PCI in the DS2500 NIR reading. What is the reason for this?

The principle of quick tests is usually based on the residual activity of the enzyme urease, which naturally occurs in soybeans. It is assumed that the anti-nutritional factors of soybeans will be sufficiently inactivated when a certain threshold of urease activity is met. However, the outcome of quick tests are dependent on, for example, the particle size of the sample, the temperature and time. For the PCI concept, we do not consider urease activity, but we use trypsin inhibitor activity to identify under-processed samples because trypsin inhibitors have a direct and negative effect on animal digestion. In principle, we expect to see low levels of trypsin inhibitor activity when the urease activity is below the threshold.

However, this may not be the case and results may be contradictory. It happens that the urease activity is already low but the trypsin inhibitor activity is still too high and vice versa (see: Chen et al., 2020). Here it is important to focus on what matters for the animal and this is a low trypsin inhibitor activity but without heat-damage, which is reflected in a PCI of 12-14 in soybean full-fat.

Can NIR detect isoflavones in Soybean meal?

Evonik does not offer AMINONIR calibrations for isoflavones in soybean meal.

What about animal byproducts such as pork meal, chicken meal, feather meal and blood meal? How can we evaluate these meals in the context of alternative of soybean meal (SBM)?

Evonik offers AMINONIR calibrations for animal byproducts which cover proximate parameters, energy values, amino acids and fatty acids. Those analytical parameters are valuable to characterize the nutritional quality of animal byproducts.

How can we estimate the digestible lysine value with respect to the total lysine value for over-toasted soybean meal (SBM)?

The AMINONIR RED service uses a two-step approach. In the first step, ingredient specific NIR calibrations are used to estimate parameters that are useful in evaluating the degree of processing. In the case of soybean products, trypsin inhibitor activity is valuable to identify under-processing, whereas the ratio of reactive lysine to total lysine is valuable to identify over-processing. The Processing Conditions Indicator (PCI) was invented to simplify the interpretation as it covers the full range from under-processed to over-processed products. In a second step, the PCI is used to adjust the amino acid digestibility based on species-specific models. The analytical report will include all the results needed for feed formulation.

Do your calibrations cover soybean expeller?

Yes, Evonik’s AMINONIR RED calibrations cover all relevant soybean products: raw soybeans, soybean full-fat, soybean expeller and soybean meal. In addition to soybean products, Evonik has developed AMINONIR RED calibrations for corn DDGS, rapeseed meal/canola meal (including glucosinolates and erucic acid), and corn.

Can we find out the formula for PCI?

Details of the PCI concept are described in the patent : Espacenet