Trouw Nutrition spotlights multi-stakeholder approach at ESPHM 2019 to support swine production and reduce reliance on antimicrobials

12 June 2019

12 June, 2019—AMERSFOORT, THE NETHERLANDS—Trouw Nutrition, a Nutreco company, spotlighted a multi-stakeholder approach to help farmers reduce reliance on antimicrobials in swine production and introduced emerging innovations to support swine health at the 11th European Symposium of Porcine Health Management (ESPHM), 22-24 May in Utrecht, the Netherlands. During the conference, Trouw Nutrition leadership reviewed the success of a government initiative to reduce antimicrobials in livestock production and scientific studies showing how feed additives can help swine producers achieve production goals while reducing antibiotics in their livestock production practices. 


Multi-stakeholder model shows record of success in reducing reliance on antimicrobials

A multi-stakeholder model engaging feed, farm and health strategies to reduce antimicrobials in livestock production has proven successful in the Netherlands where Trouw Nutrition is headquartered. The Dutch government established a goal of reducing antibiotics in livestock production by 50% between 2009 and 2015 and implemented a multi-stakeholder model to achieve these goals. Between 2009 and 2017, the Netherlands saw a 63% decline in the sales of antibiotics for livestock production (Figure 1).


Figure 1: A multi-stakeholder approach helped the Netherlands achieve a 63% decline in antibiotic sales between 2009 and 2017.                       (Maran 2017, SDa 2017)

From an animal health perspective, the integrated effort also resulted in improvements in reversing resistance to various pathogen strains such as E. coli. Remarking on the multi-stakeholder model, Maarten van der Heijden, Gut Health Programme Lead at Trouw Nutrition said, “As swine farmers transition away from conventional practices to support growth and performance, research shows a multi-stakeholder integrated approach can support animal health, environmental sustainability and the human health threat posed by antimicrobial resistance. Research findings are informing new innovations to support swine producers seeking to reduce the use of antibiotics and zinc oxide on their farms.”

 Research drives nutritional approaches to support animal health and performance

Researchers are studying how novel ingredients and innovative approaches to animal nutrition across various life stages may support key performance and health parameters. During scientific research presentations at ESPHM, Trouw Nutrition shared findings from three research studies.

  • Fungal-derived ingredient in feed additives may support producers’ antibiotic reduction goals (presented by Petra Roubos, Manager Ingredients Research)


Research shows the naturally adhesive properties of a novel fungal ingredient, Fysal® Solute, may play a role in binding to Salmonella typhimurium and E. coli, exhibiting a prebiotic effect and supporting the animal’s immune response (Figure 2).Findings from studies suggest fungi-derived feed additives may be useful to reduce antimicrobials employed in pork production.

Mode of Action Salmonella Ecoli



  • Fungal dietary treatments may improve growth performance of finishing pigs (presented by Nienke de Groot, Global Program Manager Gut Health)


Life-start is an especially critical phase that can impact an animal’s lifetime productivity. However, all life phases can benefit from tailored approaches to nutrition. For example, Trouw Nutrition research data suggests that pigs in general, but specifically smaller piglets, can benefit from fungal dietary treatments (Figure 3) included in their feed. After feeding Fysal® Solute only in weaner and grower diets, researchers found finisher pigs had a significantly higher body weight. 

Growth Performance on pigs

Figure 3: Growth performance of pigs in control group vs treatment with feed additive based on fermented ingredients (FA) during week 12-27 of age. FA was supplemented week 5-12 weeks

  • Supplementing maternal sows’ drinking water prior to farrowing may reduce piglet stillbirths (presented by Pieter Langendijk)

Research by Pieter Langendijk, a senior researcher at Trouw Nutrition, evaluated a drinking water supplement addressing the underlying causes of piglet stillbirth. When maternal sows received the drinking water supplement prior to farrowing, researchers noted several positive outcomes including a 0.6 piglet increase in the number of piglets born alive. Researchers also noted colostrum intake was increased among piglets of sows receiving the drinking water supplement. Langendijk noted that as swine producers seek to increase litter size, increased stillbirths and reduced colostrum intake are concerns that must be addressed. “Research suggests that supplementing sows’ drinking water prior to farrowing may help overcome the underlying causes of stillbirth and also contribute to piglet vitality, Langendijk stated.”

International Pig Topics published this press release on International Pig Topics Volume 34 Number 5, 2019.