Carbohydrases in Layer Diets and Their Positive Effects on the Environment
The use of feed enzymes to improve the performance of broilers fed barley- and wheat-based diets is common practice around the world. Enzyme use in corn-based broiler diets is also increasing, as recent research conducted both independently and in collaboration with Finnfeeds, has revealed significant variability between batches of corn in terms of differences in starch digestibility. Specific enzyme combinations have been developed to improve starch digestibility, thereby reducing corn variability and increasing energy availability to the bird. Enzyme use in layer diets is less common, possibly because of the assumption that birdÂ¡Â¯s gastrointestinal track is able to cope better with the antinutritional factors such as soluble non-starch polysaccharides in wheat and barley, and retrograde starch in corn.
Never the less, research and commercial experience have shown that enzymes do have a role in improving performance of laying hens. The overall effect of using feed enzymes is that both egg production and the efficiency of feed use is increased. In addition, feed enzymes can reduce the amount of nitrogen excreted by the bird, thereby reducing the risks associated with nitrogen pollution. The amount of land required to safely dispose of the nitrogen may be reduced by approximately 7-10%.