Algal Scientific, which has recently secured $7m in funding, manufactures algae-based products, and it claims that these can actually help reduce the quantities of antibiotics used in livestock production.
It has launched a new feeding product, Algamune™ Beta-1,3 Glucan, which is designed to help the food industry produce healthier chickens, raised without antibiotics. According to the firm it is the world’s first commercially produced beta glucan to be made from algae.
The company claims the product supports healthy immune function, maintains growth and performance, helps optimise feed efficiency, and increased profitability potential.
Michael Officer, vice-president of sales and marketing at Algal Scientific, explained: "Because it is derived from algae, studies show the beta glucan is more bio-available to the animal than that produced from yeast sources. Algamune delivers better health, efficiency and profitability potential and is a 'certified organic' product."
The rise in antimicrobial resistance, and increasing demand for antibiotic reduction in livestock production is a key challenge affecting the food industry. Last month McDonald’s announced it had made the decision to only source poultry from suppliers that do not use medically important antibiotics to raise birds – a policy which will be rolled out over the next two years.
According to Officer, Algamune can benefit birds being grown in any kind of commercial production system, especially in antibiotic-free and organic operations.
"Our numerous trials and studies demonstrate Algamune will help support immune function, allowing the animal to fight disease naturally and help deter health issues as well as, or better than, most feed additives and other beta glucan products," he added.