MICOALGA-FEED is an innovation project to reduce the use of antibiotics in livestock through the use of fungi and algae.
The objective is to develop new feeds supplemented with fungi and microalgae that have antibiotic, immunomodulatory and anti-inflammatory capacity for use in chicken rearing farms.
The WHO predicts that the use of antibiotics in livestock, taking into account current data, will grow by 67% between 2010 and 2030 worldwide. The risks associated with the use of these drugs in animal health are, mainly, the increasing mortality and morbidity, and the generation of bacterial resistance, which causes high losses for the sector due to the inefficiency of the available drugs and the increase in spending on feed and veterinary services.
Likewise, the high toxicity and accumulation of antibiotic residues in the food chain and the environment, added to a greater demand from society for healthy and sustainable products, makes it necessary to develop alternatives that ensure the obtaining of animal products free of waste, animal welfare and environmental protection.
MICOALGA-FEED focuses on finding innovative solutions to reduce or eliminate the use of antibiotics in livestock, specifically in poultry production, through the use of fungi and microalgae. The initiative, which has been recently approved within the subsidies for the execution of innovation projects by operating groups of the AEI-Agri, within the framework of the National Rural Development Program 2014-2020, has a budget of more than half a million euros (80% co-financed by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (EAFRD) of the European Union) and will last for two years.
To carry out this initiative, a multidisciplinary team has been created coordinated by the Galician University Business Foundation (FEUGA), and in which the companies Hifas Veterinary S.L., NeoAlgae Micro Seaweed Products S.L.N.E. and UVESA Group. The AINIA Technological Center, the University of Vigo, the Institute of Agrifood Research and Technology (IRTA) and the University of Oviedo participate as subcontracted members.
MICOALGA-FEED will be developed in several stages. In a first phase, the ingredients and combinations of them based on fungi and microalgae with the greatest potential will be selected, for subsequent design and production of feed. From there, a battery of in vitro and in vivo tests will be carried out to ensure the antimicrobial, immunomodulatory and/or anti-inflammatory capacity, as well as to check the efficacy of the feed in the experimental farm and to evaluate the quality of the meat obtained.
By strengthening the immune system of livestock through feeding, MICOALGA-FEED will seek to reduce economic losses and the high costs of treatments, while providing greater added value to poultry products.
MICOALGA-FEED has the collaboration of the Spanish Association of Poultry Science (AECA, Spanish branch of the World Poultry Science Association, WPSA), the Spanish Foundation for the Development of Animal Nutrition (FEDNA), the Spanish Confederation of Feed Manufacturers Compounds for Companion Animals (CESFAC) and the Spanish Interprofessional Association of Poultry Meat (AVIANZA).
The MICOALGA-FEED Operational Group is the body responsible for this content.
The project website is https://micoalga-feed.es/
Innovation project co-financed 80% by the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development (FEADER) of the European Union and 20% by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, within the framework of the National Rural Development Program 2014-2020 . The General Directorate for Rural Development, Innovation and Agrifood Training (DGDRIFA) is the authority in charge of applying said aid. Total budget: €524,847.66. Total grant: €505,519.66.