The responsible sourcing of raw materials and alternative proteins has “stepped up a gear” over the past couple of years and is now likely to start shaping producers’ future purchasing decisions, according to compound feed manufacturers, ABN.
Two years on from being told by the “vast majority” of pig and poultry producers that responsible sourcing and sustainability wasn’t a high priority, the company is set to use a forum session at next month’s Pig & Poultry Fair to refocus attention on the issue.
“Over the past two years we’ve seen increasing pressures from external stakeholders and especially retailers, which has brought responsible sourcing to the attention of the whole industry,” said ABN’s senior raw materials manager, Hugh Burton.
“Our core business values are based around sustainability and the environment, which is why it’s so important we make headway and have been instrumental in ensuring producers are able to continue to deliver responsible sourcing with minimal impact on global supply chains and cost.”
Mr Burton and ABN technical colleague, Dr Ade Adebiyi, will examine how companies are driving innovation in supply, nutrition and performance within the pig and poultry industries, especially how this enables producers to make informed decisions on responsible sourcing and sustainability concerns.
The company will also examine the work done by the European Feed Manufacturers’ Federation (FEFAC) to implement soya responsible sourcing guidelines, defining the baseline level of compliance for imported responsible soya into the EU.
In addition, Dr Adebiyi will explain how alternative proteins have a key role to play in pig and poultry nutrition.
“We need to educate the industry on how this will work on a practical scale, and start taking this to the next level,” he said. “I will therefore be looking at case studies of producers who are already using alternative proteins, such as wheat and maize distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS), rapeseed meal, and even deriving more protein from potatoes.
“It’s important to highlight the performance opportunities for producers here, and how the industry could move away from relying on imported raw materials.
“Looking further to the future, insect protein is a hot topic when it comes to alternative protein, so we’ll update on new developments in that area.”
The company forum will be held at 12pm on each day of the fair (May 10 and 11).
Headline image shows producers gathering for ABN’s 2014 fair forum