With the ambitious objective to help pig producers in the European Union to deal with the ban on therapeutic usages of Zinc Oxide (ZnO) by 2022, Nuscience has developed the Aim-4-Zero program.
This program, launched at Eurotier last November in Hannover, is based on 3 complementary pillars:
- benchmark, through an online questionnaire of 30 questions about management, health and nutrition practices of the farm;
- tailor-made advices, with an exchange between farm managers, veterinarians and Nuscience specialists and
- solutions, with Vitazero, an innovative product which protects pigs around weaning by killing and capturing the pathogenic bacteria, fortifying gut barrier and blocking toxins.
Finding the right balance
The program enables farmers from all over the world to find the right balance between technical and economical results. Because Nuscience is convinced that success is the result of intense collaboration, it therefore let the market speak. Forum, Nuscience partner in the UK and in Ireland and one of the earliest adopters of the Aim-4-Zero program, shares his experience with the approach of Nuscience.
Mr Des Brennan is active in the animal health & nutrition industry since 1991. He holds the position of Sales Manager in Animal Nutrition with Forum Ireland, part of Barentz group. Forum actively works with Pig, Poultry and Ruminant products. The collaboration with Nuscience started about 10 years ago and Forum is currently the sole distributor for the Nuscience range of products in Ireland and in the UK.
Alternative to zinc
He learned about the Aim-4-Zero program 1 year ago, when the product was launched. Like everywhere else in Europe, there is a demand for alternative solutions to therapeutical ZnO. “There is a clear acceptance across the industry, from farmers to nutritionists and vets, that there is no direct replacement for ZnO,” says Mr Brennan. Forum chooses to select the product Vitazero in the UK and Ireland to help pig producers to maintain an optimal gut health of the weaned pigs. This choice was made because of the long relationship built between Forum and Nuscience with other products such as C-vita and Vita GP, and the commercial and technical support provided.
Within the 3 complementary pillars of the Aim-4-Zero program: “The benchmarking is an important part of the holistic approach, as it is a relevant way to examine how the piglet can be supported when ZnO is removed. This tool enables a discussion to be started with farmers.” According to Nuscience, discussions between all involved in the sector is the best way to be successful in replacement strategies. Reducing the use of chemical antimicrobials without negatively impacting gut health of the animals is an obvious trend worldwide and can be achieved by implementing functional feed ingredients such as Medium Chain Fatty Acids.
Supporting piglets through weaning
Mr Brennan also shared his vision of weaning in Europe after the effective ban of therapeutical ZnO in 2022. “Companies and nutritionists/vets will have a ‘basket’ of additives to choose from when ZnO is banned. The Aim-4-Zero program offers a viable alternative to ZnO. When Vitazero replaces zinc oxide in the link diet of pigs (6 to 8 weeks of age), we observe an improvement in performance, that we attribute to the digestive support that Vitazero gives the piglet."
Author: Romain D'Inca, Product Manager Pigs, Nuscience