Trials Show Adding a Protease to Poultry Diets Reduces Both Feed Costs and Ammonia Emissions

In Brief:

  • A protease added to poultry diets speeds up the breakdown of proteins into nutrients, reducing both feed cost and environmental impact.
  • ProAct 360TM, the only second-generation protease on the market, helps protein degrade faster.
  • Two trials show that supplementation with ProAct 360TM significantly reduces ammonia emissions.  

As the quality and availability of the soy supply varies globally, different levels of soy and alternative protein sources are being used in broiler diets to ensure least cost feed formulation. Protein that is not digested and absorbed by the bird can be excreted into the environment and contribute to ammonia production. Different protein sources have different digestibility, so feed efficiency and protein excretion change when the raw material protein sources change.

To enhance protein utilization—which reduces both the feed cost and environmental impact—a protease can be added to the broiler diet. A protease speeds up the breakdown of proteins into nutrients that the broiler can use.  For optimal efficiency, DSM offers ProAct 360TM, the only second-generation protease on the market.  ProAct 360TM goes beyond a standard protease by offering faster protein breakdown, higher digestibility of all amino acids and better degradation of antinutritional factors, leading to an improved feed conversion ratio. By improving protein utilization, ProAct 360TM can also reduce ammonia emissions, adding sustainability as another benefit to this second-generation protease. 

Material and methods

The effect of protease supplementation on ammonia (NH3) emissions was investigated in two broiler trials. Feed was formulated with or without 50 grams per ton of the novel protease (ProAct 360TM) in a corn / soybean meal basal diet. The chickens were housed in floor pen systems covered with clean wood shavings in an environmentally controlled room. Gas emissions from the litters were measured within the floor pen after 42 days of supplementation.

In both trials, a significant reduction of ammonia emissions was observed in litters where animals were fed ProAct 360TM compared to control litters without inclusion of a protease. In the first and second trial, ammonia emissions were reduced by 21% and 32%, respectively.

Trial Results: Observed reduction in ammonia (NH3) emissions from litters where animals were fed ProAct 360TM


Based on this trial, the addition of ProAct 360 TM can significantly reduce ammonia emissions in broilers fed standard corn/soybean meal-based diets. ProAct 360 TM in combination with lower inclusion of crude protein and amino acids in the diet offers substantiable reduction in ammonia emissions. ProAct 360 TM can play a major role in achieving more sustainable animal production.

Published on

29 April 2022


  • Poultry
  • Enzymes
  • Sustainability

About the Authors

Francesco Castellone - Global Feed Optimization lead - protease

Francesco Castellone is a Global Feed Optimization lead for protease. He holds a Master Degree in applied poultry science and a Degree in Veterinary Medicine obtained respectively in the UK and Italy. Francesco started his career as poultry veterinarian and has more than 10 years’ experience in animal nutrition and health industry over various technical and marketing roles.

Aurélia-Anne Séon Simon - Senior Scientist Animal Nutrition & Health

Aurélia A. Séon Simon is a senior Scientist in the DSM Global Science Poultry team. She holds a PhD degree in Microbial Ecology and Pig Nutrition obtained at University of Paris VI in France. Aurélia has more than 20 years of experience in the animal nutrition & health industry through different positions within DSM Research.

Elle Chadwick - Global Poultry Marketing Specialist, Animal Nutrition and Health at dsm-firmenich

Elle Chadwick is the Global Poultry Marketing Specialist at dsm-firmenich. She received her PhD in Poultry and Animal Science from North Carolina State University, USA. Elle has worked in the poultry and human health industries as a consultant for applied disease mitigation. She joined BIOMIN®, now part of dsm-firmenich, in 2021 as a Global Product Manager for Microbials.


You are being redirected.

We detected that you are visitng this page from United States. Therefore we are redirecting you to the localized version.