The mass spec workflows covering everything from toxins to vitamins
Animal feed testing is an integral part of providing safe agricultural feed for livestock. Organic compound assessment in feeds can be broadly divided into two groups, contaminants and dietary nutrition.
Feed matrixes are a notorious challenge to analyze. This is owing to the vast presence of primary ingredients such as fats, carbohydrates secondary plant products and additives such as binders, preservatives, anti-microbials and fortified vitamins, resulting in a complex sample. This often interferes with the targeted compounds of interest, reducing the quality of results. Hence, animal feed manufacturers are turning to LC-MS/MS technology for safety and quality assurance of their feed products.
The high selectivity and sensitivity of the LC-MS/MS can allow multi-contaminant screening to increase throughput, at the same time, reducing sample preparation and analysis lead time. Such methods can simultaneously detect for mycotoxins (including Aflatoxins, Deoxynivalenol, Zearalenone, Fumonisins, Fusarium toxins) and pesticides in a single injection.
Antibiotics are common feed additives used as growth promoters, but are also used in feed manufacturing to clean the equipment, resulting in some potential accumulation of those cleaning antibiotics in the feed itself. LC-MS/MS is very often used to monitor for low level antibiotic residues in feeds to ensure limited propogation of controlled antibiotics into the feed supply and also to monitor for quality control for feeds that are fortified with some antibiotics.
Another aspect of testing focuses on the dietary supplement of the feed. Since the correct feed formulation increases the productivity, the quality of the product and well-being of the animals, it is essential to ensure vitamin fortification is well-kept in balance. LC-MS/MS provides rapid vitamin analytical methods to quantitate dietery vitamins, namely vitamin A, B, D, E, K to promote a comprehensive nutrition for animals.