BUTIFOUR® F launch in Bangladesh

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IMPEXTRACO had a successful launch of our new product range BUTIFOUR® at VIV Europe in Utrecht last May, we started the technical training of our distributors worldwide, ensuring the technical support to our customers. This gut health promoting product range is characterized by 2 new products: BUTIFOUR® F for poultry and BUTIFOUR® NF for pigs and calves.

BUTIFOUR® F was launched in Bangladesh in September during a very nice event where Dr. Anuruddha Jayatillaike explained in details how BUTIFOUR® F works, which organs are targeted as well as the working mechanisms with regards to balancing the intestinal microbiota, promotion of the intestinal barrier function, stimulation of nutriënt digestion and absorption and modulation of the immune system.

The Century Agro team was really interested and motivated to develop BUTIFOUR® F into the market leader in the Bangladesh market!


Successful exhibition in Cairo – June 6-8, 2013

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Agrena is the largest and most prestigious poultry, livestock and aqua exhibition in the Middle East. Once again Impextraco was present through its partner in Egypt – Nile Vet – offering a complete range of feed additives to both feed mills and end producers alike.

Thanks to its 15 men strong team, Nile Vet has been successfully distributing Impextraco’s products for more than 12 years now. With raw material costs on the high our ELITOX – power mycotoxin eliminator -  as well as our ZYMPEX range – enzymes – met a great success.

All requests were answered, issues solved,  professionally yet in a very amicable atmosphere, so typical of the Egyptian hospitality!



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The first Impextraco technical transfer program was conducted in Nepal, Chitawan at Royal Century hotel on 6th Saturday April 2013.


The program highlighted on “MYCOTOXINS, EFFECTS TO CHICKEN AND CONTROL PROGRAM’ was conducted by Dr. Anuruddha Jayatillake Technical and marketing manager of Impextraco.


The main focus of this seminar was to help controlling mycotoxins issues all year around with a special focus during the most sensitive period of the year in Nepal, from May to November. During the peak period it is very common to hear of complaints from the field  with high disease challenge (IBD, ND & bacterial diseases), poor production data such as feed conversion efficiency, poor feed intake, as well as high mortality.

The 40 participants included farmers, feed mill operators and some traders; all attended the program jointly organized with by Impextraco distributor Mr. Rajib Pradhan of Rajib Feeds. The serious issue of mycotoxins elimination was discussed in a very open and enthusiast atmosphere.

Belgian Ambassador visits Impextraco Latin America – December 2012

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On December 4 Impextraco Latin America was honored with the visit of the Ambassador of Belgium in Brazil, His Excellency Mr. Jozef De Smet, the new Consul General of Belgium in São Paulo His Excellency Mr. Didier Vanderhasselt, accompanied by the Honorary Consul of Belgium in the states of Paraná and Santa Catarina, His Excellency Dr. Joao Casillo.

In a presentation the CEO of Impextraco Latin America, Mr. Patrick Pauwelyn exposed, among other topics, comparative figures between Brazil and Belgium, the scenario of agriculture in Brazil, the feed production in Latin America as well as the position of Impextraco this market. Further on, they have discussed issues relevant to existing trade relations between Brazil and Belgium.

“Brazil and Belgium have a dynamic relationship,” said the ambassador, adding: “Brazil has become a major trading partner for Belgian companies.” Moreover, to increase commercial exchange between Brazil and European countries, representatives of Belgium in Brazil are seeking to improve their vision, country’s trade and market access, especially in agribusiness and port. “Even with the economic crisis in Europe, the Belgian government decided that it will continue investing in Brazil,” says the Consul.

Another issue discussed during the meeting was the relationship between the countries’ universities. The exchange between students is being evaluated as a breakthrough for all areas, taking into account the exchange of information and research, including in the field of agribusiness in both countries.


Dr. Francois Madec visits Impextraco Latin America – September 2012

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Dr. Francois Madec is known worldwide for his “20 points to prevent swine circovirosis”.  He was invited by Impextraco to visit our offices in Brazil and present two lectures during the PorkExpo held in Curitiba (Parana), which is supported by Impextraco.

Taking advantage of the occasion, Dr. Madec, known for his extensive knowledge of pigs, visited our offices and participated in meetings to exchange experience. He also made a visit  to our company’s experimental units : swine farm (Federal University of Parana) and poultry in Irati, Parana.


The “20 points of Madec” are a set of biosecurity measures, such as disinfection actions, management, sanitary control and general health, which help decrease the persistence of the virus and stimulate the immune response of animals.

Uruguay – International Congress of Animal Feeding 28-29 November 2012

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Organized by the Uruguayan Association of Animal Nutrition Industries (Audina), the International Congress of Animal Feeding took place from 28 to 29 November 2012 in the Convention Center of the Conrad Hotel in Punta del Este, Uruguay.

Impextraco was present with two speakers: Louis Marcel Joineau, technical sales manager for Latin America Impextraco, who presented “Organic acids: a tool for animal nutrition” and Dr. Everton Krabbe, production and nutrition research in poultry Embrapa, Brazil, with the theme “Quality Raw Materials.”

Dr. Krabbe addressed issues relating to the quality of raw materials, especially practical aspects such as conservation of maize and its impact on the nutritional value, mycotoxins and grain milling, expressed through the parameter DGM (geometric mean diameter ) and their effects on digestibility for poultry and pigs. In relation to soy and its derivatives used in animal nutrition, the approach was correct about the processing and inactivation of anti-nutritional factors and their effect on the total nutritional value. Then he moved on to oxidation, threatening raw materials rich in fat, such as animal meal. Proper use of antioxidant program and monitoring using specific analytical methods are important in the prevention and control of this aspect. Finally, we analyzed water quality for poultry and pigs. The use of organic acids (formic, propionic, lactic and other) associated with chlorination, produces a better quality of water for animal consumption and reflected in better performance and health of the animals.

Avi Africa May 29-31, 2012

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Gauteng has seen yet another successful Avi Africa exhibition last may (29-31). The biggest poultry event in Africa is organised by the South African Poultry Association (SAPA), association that was create early last century and which purpose is to help the South African poultry sector in different aspects such as modernisation, regulation and training among other.

Exhibitors from all over the world participated and our partner and distributor Bupo did once again a fantastic job. This partnership helps putting Elitox in the centre of the African map!

Thanks to the technical knowledge and dedication of our partner, sales in Elitox are growing faster than expected…

We’re looking forward to meeting our African customers during next Avi Africa.

Critical control points for proper mycotoxin management by Dr. Ir. Anouck Witters, Impextraco NV

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1.       Introduction

Mycotoxins are naturally occurring toxic metabolites produced by fungi (moulds) in the field or during storage. Once the contaminated material is ingested by the animal, these metabolites cause mycotoxicosis. The toxicity of mycotoxins depends on the amounts ingested, duration of exposure, type of animal, their breed, age, sex, health status, but also on other parameters such as density of animals, diseases, temperature, etc… Diagnosis of mycotoxicosis is difficult as symptoms are usually non-specific oppblåsbare leker.

2.       Risk factors for mycotoxin contamination

The risk level for mycotoxins depends on climate conditions (temperature, humidity) since mold growth is favoured in hot and humid climates. Therefore, field as well as storage conditions need to be managed in order to minimize the risk for mycotoxin contamination. Nevertheless, equal field and storage conditions may face different mycotoxin problems according to the type of crops on the field. Including DDGS as a protein source in the feed, for example, implements an increased risk for mycotoxins (figure 1).


Fig. 1 The use of by-products and alternative feed ingredients implement increased risk on mycotoxin contamination. e.g. DDGS produced from corn with 1ppm mycotoxins is 3 times more contaminated than the source material.

In summary of these risk factors, mycotoxins seem to become an increasing problem on a global scale due to changes in global climatological conditions and increased worldwide trading in agricultural commodities. Moreover, by-products and alternative feed ingredients are being used more regularly, despite their high mycotoxin risk factor.

3.       Detection of mycotoxins

The increased detection of mycotoxin contamination is not only due to an increased prevalence of mycotoxins, but also because of improved analytical methods to detect them. The first and most crucial step in mycotoxin analysis is sampling of raw materials or feed. Samples should be representative for the whole batch, which means that the sample should be taken at random but equally divided spots of the batch. Indeed, mycotoxin contamination can be concentrated to so-called ‘hot spots’, while other parts of the batch are not contaminated at all. On the other hand, the quantity of the sample should be proportional to the total batch weight.

Another detection-issue is the presence of so-called ‘masked’ mycotoxins. These toxins are bound to a more polar molecule, like glucose, resulting in conjugated mycotoxins. These conjugates have been shown to escape the routine mycotoxin detection methods; however, the toxic precursors will be released by hydrolysis during digestion. Literature reports occurrences of DON- and ZEA-glucoside up to respectively 12% of DON and 20% of ZEA levels (figure 2) (Schneweis et al., 2002; Berthiller et al., 2005). So, analyzing samples only for mycotoxins and not for their glucoside-conjugates, will probably underestimate the real risk for contamination.

Fig. 2 Occurrence of  mycotoxin glucoside-conjugates (ZON-4-Glc; DON-3-GLC) in maize and wheat samples according to 2 mini-surveys (Schneweis, I. et al., 2002; Berthiller, F. et al., 2005).

Besides the occurrence of masked and less-known mycotoxins; multi-mycotoxin contamination also means potential synergism between co-occuring toxins. It has been demonstrated that e.g. broiler body weight reduced 12% due to consuming 2.5ppm aflatoxin-contaminated feed; 0.2ppm ochratoxin-contaminated feed reduced the body weight by 14%; consuming feed contaminated with a combination of both mycotoxins resulted in 39% reduced body weights. Previous results clearly show the synergism between both toxins.

4.       Prevention and control of mycotoxins

If favourable growth conditions for fungi are met, it is very difficult to avoid the production of mycotoxins. However, effective prevention strategies will certainly limit the incidence of mycotoxins. Prevention can be implemented before harvest with a good management of the crop, harvesting and storage. It must be noted, however, that prevention does not remove present mycotoxins.

Many methods, chemical as well as physical, have been tested to remove mycotoxins from commodities. The problem is that they are costly, usually generate high losses and may reduce the palatability and the nutritional value of the raw materials. In practice, mycotoxin binders are most commonly used, whether or not combined with the strategy of biotransformation.

4.1 Use of mycotoxin binders

Binding mycotoxins is a widespread approach to reduce the toxin’s bioavailability in the gastrointestinal tract. One of the first scientific studies on binding properties of clays showed that a specific type of phyllosilicate clays, hydrated sodium calcium aluminosilicates (HSCAS), have high affinity for aflatoxin B1 (Phillips et al., 1988). Indeed, the good stability of the aflatoxin-HSCAS complexes over a wide pH range (2-10) and up to 37°C supports the in vivo efficacy of such binders (Sarr et al., 1990). Further studies have demonstrated that HSCAS can be very helpful to prevent aflatoxicosis in different species such as chickens, turkeys, goats, cows, pigs, or lambs. However, the efficacy of HSCAS seems to differ according to the type of mycotoxins: HSCAS are effective against aflatoxin B1 and ochratoxin A, while they appear totally ineffective to tackle trichothecenes (e.g. T-2 toxin, deoxynivalenol).

Although activated carbon has proven to be effective on binding mycotoxins in vitro, e.g. fumonisin B1 (Solfrizzo et al., 2001) or ochratoxin A, it did not show clear positive effects in vivo. Probably, this could be due to the fact that activated carbon can indiscriminately bind other dietary components, such as vitamins, minerals and drugs.

Stanley et al. (1993) reported Saccharomyces cerevisiae being helpful in the case of aflatoxin contamination; they concluded that the yeast cell wall binds mycotoxins.  The effects of yeast cell walls against ochratoxin were studied by Santin et al. (2003) in broilers. Their results indicate that zootechnical parameters, impaired due to ochratoxins, were not improved by application of yeast cell walls. Yiannikouris et al. (2004) investigated the interaction of yeast cell walls with zearalenone in vitro. They concluded that the chemical interactions are better described as adsorption rather than binding.

Based on literature, the main limitations of “mycotoxin binders” can be summarized as following:

  • Their efficacy is limited to a few mycotoxins.

Generally speaking, binders are effective against so-called polar mycotoxins, such as aflatoxins. Indeed, these mycotoxins have a chemical structure which allows efficient binding. In the case of other mycotoxins, such as trichothecenes, binding efficacy is generally very poor, if not zero.

  • Their in vitro efficacy does not guarantee their performance in vivo.

In vitro tests do not always represent what happens in the digestive tract as they are performed under specific and rather simple conditions. Not taking into account variable physiological parameters (pH variation, interaction with feed or enzymatic secretions) increases the risk to draw false conclusions. Indeed, mycotoxins may be released from the binder in the intestinal environment, as it is a reversible process.

  • Some of them are not specific to mycotoxins.

Some binders interact with other dietary components, such as vitamins, minerals and drugs. This will limit the efficacy against the mycotoxin(s) and also affect the performance of the animals.

4.2 Biotransformation of mycotoxins

Due to the above listed drawbacks of mycotoxin binders, alternative strategies are recommended.  By means of live micro-organisms or enzymatic preparations, mycotoxins are biotranfsformed into non-toxic metaboliltes.

An Agrobacterium-Rhizobium was reported to be able to transform deoxynivalenol into a less toxic compound, 3-keto-deoxynivalenol (Shima et al., 1997). This biotransformation was suggested to be caused by an extracellular enzyme excreted by the organism. A similar transformation of trichothecenes was observed by Völkl et al. (2004).

Zearalenone, which interferes with oestrogen receptors, can be converted into a far less oestrogenic-like product, 1-(3,5-dihydroxyphenyl)-10’-hydroxy-1’-undecen-6’-one (Takahashi-Ando et al., 2002). The enzyme responsible for the detoxification appears to be a hydrolase that cleaves the lactone ring.

The application of such enzymatic transformations in the feed sector offers new opportunities. Indeed, compared to binders, enzymes can have a higher specificity and perform a non-reversible reaction. Moreover, the enzyme activity is not limited to polar mycotoxins only.

5.       Evaluating efficacy of mycotoxin controlling products

To reveal the real binding or inactivation of mycotoxins, simple measurements in the feed (in vitro) are not sufficient since they do not reflect actual conditions inside the animal and the possible interactions with binding or enzymatic reaction.

Nevertheless, analyzing the toxin inactivating effect in live animals (in vivo) is very complex. Most of the studies evaluate animal performance; however, this parameter is influenced by many other factors difficult to control. Some studies measure the serum mycotoxin levels. However, this is not possible for all types of mycotoxins and most toxins are rapidly metabolised or stored in the animal. Consequently, the serum levels are not always representative for the ingested amount of mycotoxins. Moreover, individual serum mycotoxin levels also differ according to genetics, bodyweight, water intake etc. of the animal.

A perfect in vitro model of the animal eliminates individual variation and controls all other factors. At HAS Den Bosch (High School of Agriculture, the Netherlands) a small intestinal model was developed that simulates anaerobic environment, constant (body) temperature, several subsequent environments at different pH, retention times, addition of bile, pepsin and gut enzymes and the moisture:feed (digestive bolus) ratio (figure 3). So, this model allows studying interactions between feed, mycotoxins and mycotoxin-deactivating substances in “real” conditions. This offers a clear advantage compared to the classical in vitro tests where only pH is controlled and other parameters are not taken into account.

 Fig. 3 Gut simulator model developed by HAS Den Bosch research group (the Netherlands). This model was used by Impextraco (Belgium) to develop their feed additive against mycotoxins, Elitox®.

In the development of a solution to counteract the effects of mycotoxins in feed, Impextraco (Belgium) screened many products, including binders and enzymes, by means of this gut simulator model. The best toxin binder that emerged from this screening was combined with enzymes. In addition, a biopolymer was selected for its mycotoxin binding properties. Moreover, the biopolymer has been proven to be antibacterial and antifungal. The included natural extracts and vitamins act against the symptoms associated with mycotoxin contamination. In conclusion, Impextraco’s product (Elitox®) unites in one single product different strategies to counteract a wide range of mycotoxins.

6.       Conclusion

Mycotoxins are harmful to animals and can greatly affect their performance and productivity. Because of the wide range of mycotoxins, with different chemical structures, a single approach cannot efficiently solve the problem.

Prevention is a key control point but cannot guarantee the absence of mycotoxins. Contaminated commodities require the use of different elimination strategies. A product combining mycotoxin binders with toxin-degrading enzymes and a biopolymer seems to be the required standard for proper mycotoxin management.

References are available upon request.

V SIA (International Poultry Seminar) – INVETSA – Peru – Mary 2 – 5, 2012

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From May 2 – 5, 2012, Impextraco’s distributor for Peru – INVETSA participated in  V SIA (International  Poultry Seminar), that took place in Cuzco, Peru.

The seminar, aimed at presenting the current and future trends of the Latin America poultry sector, was attended by representatives of the most important poultry enterprises from Peru and Bolivia Inflatable Slides.

Impextraco invited Dr. Everton Krabbe – EMBRAPA/Brazil, who gave a lecture on   “Practical aspects related to raw material quality in animal nutrition”

Dynamic group sessions were also held, involving the host, presenters and attendees, where presenters were acknowledged for their accomplishment in the poultry sector.

Central American Poultry Congress – Panama – May 23 – 25, 2012

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Organic Acids were the main theme of the Central American Pountry Congress in Panama.

Meetings were held about this subject with customers and distributors.

Impextraco developed the Acidal® range, based on the external conditions that are necessary for maximum profit, as well as the strategies of its use. All of this is obvioulsy supported by several studies at our own experimental units and longlasting partnerships with universities in Brazil.