It is widely accepted that over 25% of grain is contaminated with mycotoxins, making mitigation of mycotoxin effects crucial. Practical methods of preventing mold growth include keeping the moisture and temperature of feed low during storage. Treatment of feed with fungicides or preservatives can also help. Once contaminated, feed can be re-dried, removed, or diluted with uncontaminated supplies. However, even if an operation manages to destroy molds in feed, it is unfeasible to destroy the chemically stable mycotoxins once established.
Phyllosilicates (montmorillonite) and tectosilicates (diatomite) have been researched and proven effective in binding mycotoxins. They work by forming a permanent compound with mycotoxins, allowing livestock to expel rather than absorb the toxins. Montmorillonite and diatomite are simple to administer, cost effective, and do not affect nutrient bioavailability.
A university study showed that dairy cows fed silage that did not contain concerning levels of mycotoxins produced 2.4% more milk when given montmorillonite and diatomite over cows that did not receive those minerals. Other in vivo studies have demonstrated that diatomite and montmorillonite rectify the undesirable effects of mycotoxins:
• Broiler chicks suffering from aflatoxicosis significantly increased weight gain, feed
intake, and feed conversion once provided with diatomite. (View source)
• Sodium bentonite and calcium bentonite products, whose primary component is
montmorillonite, significantly reduced aflatoxin residues in milk. (View source)
Without curbing mycotoxins in feed, producers cannot achieve the best performance or profits from their animals.
GeoBond® is a product of Bennett Mineral Company and a registered trademark of Geo Research Associates.