The vital role of international standards in animal feeding stuffs


Nowadays, in trade and commerce transcend borders, ensuring the safety and quality of animal feeding stuffs is of paramount importance. International standards play a crucial role in regulating and harmonizing the production, labeling, and distribution of these products. These standards provide a common framework that promotes transparency, facilitates trade, and safeguards animal health and welfare. In this article, we will explore the significance of international standards in animal feeding stuffs and how they contribute to a sustainable and responsible global feed industry.

Animal feeding stuffs - Methods of sampling and analysis - Determination of pyrrolizidine alkaloids in animal feeding stuff by LC-MS/MS

EN 17683:2023

International standards establish guidelines for the composition, production methods, and labeling of animal feeding stuffs. They define the permissible limits of contaminants, such as heavy metals, mycotoxins, and pesticide residues, thereby protecting animal health and preventing the transmission of harmful substances through the food chain. One of such standards is EN 17683:2023.

This document specifies a method for the quantitative determination of pyrrolizidine alkaloids (PA) in the concentration ranges shown in Table 1 in complete and supplementary feed and in forages by liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC-MS/MS) after solid phase extraction (SPE) clean-up.

Table 1 - Summary of concentration ranges per PA tested in the collaborative trial

NOTE 1   A second method was part of the method validation collaborative main trial. For this method PA-N-Oxides are reduced by adding zinc powder to the extract of the feed material. The following steps correspond to the first and main method. Quantitative results for each PA except the otonecine type PA senkirkine represent the sum of the free PA base and its corresponding N-oxide.

NOTE 2   Due to insufficient numbers of data for some analyte-matrix combinations statistical evaluation was not valid for standardization. Received data indicated the methods applicability in experienced laboratories with appropriate quality assurance measures. Therefore, the method description is included as an informative annex (Annex D).

By adhering to this standard, producers can ensure that their products meet the necessary safety and quality requirements, instilling confidence in consumers and facilitating fair trade practices.

Animal feeding stuffs: Methods of sampling and analysis - Detection and enumeration of Pediococcus spp. used as feed additive

SIST EN 15786:2022

International standards facilitate the smooth flow of animal feeding stuffs across borders by promoting consistency and harmonization. They provide a common language for manufacturers, regulators, and importers, ensuring that products meet the same specifications regardless of their country of origin. One of the documents that contains specifications for EU trade zone is SIST EN 15786:2022.

This international standard defines general rules for the enumeration of probiotic pediococci in feed samples (additives, premixtures and feeding stuffs) that contain pediococci as a single bacterial component or in a mixture with other microorganisms. This standard is not applicable for mineral feeds which are defined as complementary feeding stuffs composed mainly of minerals and containing at least 40 % crude ash (Council Directive 79/373/EEC). There are different categories of feed samples:

a)   Additives containing about 10+10 (colony forming units) CFU/g

b)   Premixtures containing  about 10+8 CFU/g

c)   Feeds, meal or pellets, which contain about 10+6 CFU/g and include complete feeding stuffs, and milk replacers.

This reduces trade barriers, simplifies market access, and encourages fair competition. Harmonized standards also minimize the need for multiple testing and certification procedures, saving time and resources for both producers and regulatory authorities.

Animal feeding stuff: Methods of sampling and analysis - Determination of intact glucosinolates in feed materials and compound feed by LC-MS/MS

EN 17853:2023

Animal feeding stuffs play a crucial role in maintaining the health and well-being of livestock. International standards focus on formulating feeds that meet the specific nutritional requirements of different animal species, promoting optimal growth, reproduction, and disease resistance. One of the most recent standards in this area of operating is EN 17853:2023.

This document specifies a method for the determination of individual intact glucosinolates in feed materials including oilseeds and oilseed products and in compound feeds by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) coupled with tandem mass spectrometry (MS/MS).

The method specified in this document has been successfully validated by collaborative trial in the following matrices: rape seed, camelina seed, Brassica oleracea seeds, mixed oilseeds, rape seed flakes, compound feed for bovine, porcine and poultry.

The method is applicable for the quantitative determination of epiprogroitrin, glucoalyssin, glucoarabin, glucobrassicanapin, glucobrassicin, glucocamelinin, glucoerucin, glucoiberin, gluconapin, gluconapoleiferin, gluconasturtiin, glucoraphanin, glucoraphenin, glucotropaeolin, homoglucocamelinin, 4-hydroxyglucobrassicin, 4-methoxyglucobrassicin, neoglucobrassicin, progoitrin, sinalbin and sinigrin.

The concentration ranges tested in the collaborative trial for each individual glucosinolate and for the total glucosinolate content are summarized in Table 1.

Additionally, this standards address the ethical aspects of animal welfare, including the use of safe and sustainable ingredients, humane production practices, and the avoidance of controversial substances. By adhering to these standards, producers contribute to the overall health and welfare of animals under their care.

Animal feeding stuffs: Methods of sampling and analysis - Determination of pentachlorophenol (PCP) in feed materials and compound feed by LC-MS/MS

EN 17362:2020

International standards in animal feeding stuffs also promote sustainability in the feed industry. They emphasize the responsible sourcing of raw materials, encouraging the use of sustainable agricultural practices, and minimizing environmental impact. By setting criteria for resource efficiency, waste management, and greenhouse gas emissions, these standards contribute to the reduction of environmental footprints associated with feed production. This, in turn, supports the broader goals of sustainable agriculture and responsible resource management. One of the standards that follows above mentioned aspects is EN 17362:2020.

This document specifies a liquid chromatographic method with triple-quadrupole mass spectrometry (MS/MS) detection for the determination of pentachlorophenol (PCP) in feed materials and animal feed.

The limit of quantitation (LOQ) for the PCP determination in guar gum, fatty acid distillates (FAD) and animal feed is 10 µg/kg. Individual laboratories are responsible for ensuring that the equipment that they use will achieve this limit of quantification. The method is validated in an international collaborative trial for pentachlorophenol in compound feed, guar gum and fatty acid distillate in the range between 9 µg/kg and 22 µg/kg.

The results of the collaborative trial, in which 16 laboratories participated, have shown that the method is applicable for the determination of PCP in compound feed, guar gum and FAD at the desired limit of 10 µg/kg. Satisfactory results were obtained for one compound feed sample, guar gum and the two FAD samples (HorRat <2), while for the second compound feed sample a HorRat value of 2,2 was obtained.

International standards in animal feeding stuffs are not static; they continuously evolve in response to scientific advancements and emerging challenges. They are developed through a collaborative effort involving experts, researchers, and stakeholders from around the world. This ensures that the standards remain up-to-date with the latest knowledge and technologies, enabling the feed industry to adapt to changing needs and address emerging risks effectively.

The main influence of the international standards

International standards play a critical role in ensuring the safety, quality, and sustainability of animal feeding stuffs. By providing a common framework for production, labeling, and trade, these standards promote transparency, facilitate market access, and safeguard animal health and welfare. The global adoption and implementation of these standards are crucial for creating a responsible and sustainable feed industry, benefiting not only the producers and consumers but also the environment and animal populations worldwide.