The report “Feed Acidifiers Market by Type (Propionic Acid, Formic Acid, Lactic Acid, Citric Acid, Sorbic Acid, Malic Acid), Form (Dry, Liquid), Compound (Blended, Single), Livestock (Poultry, Swine, Ruminants, Aquaculture), and Region – Global Forecast to 2023″ Over the years, the production pattern in the feed industry has transformed in tandem with the health requirements of livestock. For improved growth and efficiency of livestock, rearers included antibiotics as additives in feed. However, the use of antibiotics as feed additives impacts the health of animals, which, in turn, affects the health of consumers adversely. Due to the adverse effects on the health of consumers, the EU has imposed a ban on the use of antibiotics. This ban has encouraged rearers to opt for cost-effective and health-enriching alternatives such as feed acidifiers. According to MarketsandMarkets, the feed acidifiers market is projected to account for a value of USD 3.5 billion by 2023, recording a CAGR of 5.1%.
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High threat of diseases in livestock
The outbreak of diseases such as avian flu, BSE (bovine spongiform encephalopathy), and SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome) not only affect livestock breeding and the economy, but also pose a threat to human health. The emergence of swine diarrhea in the US caused significant losses to swine farmers. Moreover, countries such as China, India, and Indonesia are constantly facing outbreaks of avian flu and swine flu, due to the hot and humid climatic conditions. Meat vendors, meat processors, wholesalers, retailers, and ultimately, livestock growers suffer financial losses due to the culling of disease-affected animals, which further leads to a drop-in animal productivity. The foot and mouth disease (FMD) outbreak in the UK in 2007 led to losses of USD 3.7 billion to the livestock sector. The avian flu outbreak of 2013 resulted in economic losses worth USD 6.1 billion in China. Nearly, 130 people were infected in mainland China during this outbreak, according to the UN. Feed safety has increasingly become a matter of concern for many governments around the world, especially those in North America and Europe. Also, consumers around the world are now more aware and informed and are giving importance to the extrinsic attributes of the meat they consume. Certain pathogenic and parasitic contaminations in meat products—Salmonella, Listeria, and E. coli—could thereby cause various disease outbreaks in livestock animals.
Many countries, including South Korea and Slovakia, have banned pork imports from Germany due to the health risks involved. The use of natural feed additives, such as acidifiers, provide balanced nutrition to animals and protects them against such harmful environmental entities. They also play an important role in overcoming issues related to animal feeding assurance, environment-friendly meat production, and animal welfare. Acidifiers provide various nutritional elements, which help improve the productivity of livestock, besides maintaining good-quality feed.
The usage of feed acidifiers in such cases proved to be an effective medium to reduce disease outbreaks by improving animal health, by improving feed efficiency, by inhibiting pathogenic bacteria growth, and reducing risks of sub-clinical infections. The addition of feed acidifiers to feed also helps in maintaining an optimum pH in the stomach of the livestock, stimulates feed consumption, and improves protein and energy digestibility by reducing microbial competition with host nutrients and endogenous nitrogen losses. Most feed ingredients from plant sources prove to be inadequate in meeting such requirements, and carrying out these functionalities. Therefore, the inclusion of feed acidifiers is important for the maintenance of animal health in such cases. This is one of the major factors driving the demand for feed acidifiers.
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Rising prices of feed acidifiers
The trend of price increase has been observed for feed acidifiers, owing to which the market for these products has been hindered. Manufacturers of feed acidifiers are faced with rising product prices and diminishing supply, inducing market pressures that have led to the increase in price structures. For example, formic acid and propionic acid, which boast of a wide range of applications, including animal nutrition, have been experiencing a rise in consumption, thereby leading to a rise in their prices. Apart from being used as a feed preservative and acidifier, formic acid is also used in leather processing for the efficient fixing of dyes and acts as a re-tanning agent. Potassium formate, which is a salt of formic acid, is used as an environmentally acceptable de-icing agent, which is used on roads and airport runways. Additionally, both formic acid and potassium formate are used in the oilfield industry as a part of the drilling process and in shale gas exploration. Formic acid is also used as a descaling agent.
Propionic acid, on the other hand, finds usage in the production of pharmaceuticals as a crop protection agent, solvent, and as a food preservative, apart from being used as a feed acidifier and preservative. Such a wide range of applications has led to rising demands, resulting in manufacturers increasing their prices for feed acidifier products. For example, BASF is expected to increase its prices of formic and propionic acid in 2018. This increase in prices is expected to follow after a recent increase in similar product prices, in 2017, when BASF increased its formic acid prices by USD 0.03 per pound, for its formic acid 85%, 90%, 95%, and 99% grades. Similarly, citric acid prices have been rising, owing to high production costs and a tightening supply. The supply of citric acid is highly concentrated in China, which makes it a highly concentrated market. This has led to a very constricted global supply of citric acid from Europe and the Americas, resulting in rising prices. Additionally, citric acid finds its major application in food & beverage products, making it a limited commodity to be used in feed. About 70% of the supply of citric acid is used for food & beverage products, which has resulted in a rise in its prices. These factors are expected to highly restrict the market growth for feed acidifiers during the forecast period.