Belgis Biotech Laboratories

Feedstuff And Forages Feeding Value Services

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The reference method for the determination of ‘in vivo’ digestibility is based on digestibility trial on animals. Along the test, the animal (small ruminant) stay standstill in a metabolism crate. During the trial period, ingested and excreted nutrients are weighed to determine the digestibility using the relation :

Analysis
Determination of ‘in vivo’ digestibility (faecal digestibility) of :

  1. dry matter (DM) and organic matter (OM),
  2. crude protein (CP),
  3. fibres content (cellulose according to Wende, fibres according to Van Soest (NDF, ADF, ADL)).


Determination of degradability kinetics, in artificial rumen, of :

  1. dry matter (DM – under accreditation) and organic matter (OM),
  2. crude protein (CP),
  3. fibres content (cellulose according to Wende, fibres according to Van Soest (NDF, ADF, ADL)),
  4. starch (under accreditation), …



Material
-     Digestibility unit with 20 digestibility crates and 20 rams (texel and crossbreed).

-     Artificial rumen constituted of 2 large capacity hermitic enclosures and fistulated ruminants (permanent ruminal fistula) to produce rumen juice.

Methodology
DIGESTIBILITY TRIAL
The reference method for the determination of ‘in vivo’ digestibility is based on digestibility trial on animals. Along the test, the animal (small ruminant) stay standstill in a metabolism crate. During the trial period, ingested and excreted nutrients are weighed to determine the digestibility using the relation :


ARTIFICIAL FERMENTOR
A large capacity artificial rumen was developed to study the kinetic parameters of the ruminal degradability. This approach is based on the 'in sacco' nylon bags technique applied in mechanical fermentors filled with buffered rumen juice solution and placed in a hermitic enclosure maintained at 39°C with a  CO2 saturated atmosphere.
This method allows to study the dry matter disappearance kinetics parameters by weighting bags removed from the incubator after defined times and to determine the degradability kinetics of organic matter major components by NIRS analysis of each bag residue, based  on previously created predictive models.

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