InVivo Labs, a French company providing testing services to the feed industry, is investing in its Vietnam laboratory, as it aims to develop its client network in the Philippines, Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore and Indonesia.
Currently most feed manufacturers operate their own laboratories where they carry out a few nutritional tests for evaluating raw materials and verifying finished products, which is necessary but not sufficient. In order to optimise a diet, more nutritional parameters should be taken into account e.g. micronutrients such as amino acids and minerals. Detecting raw material adulteration as well as traces of contaminants are also issues that are important to take into account. Such tests are usually done by external labs as they require advanced technique and expensive equipment.
The Asian testing market looks very promising: feed companies are progressing towards more advanced formulation systems. While doing so, they need to send samples to external laboratories for parameters that are difficult to analyse on their own. InVivo Labs Vietnam provides testing services for over 200 different parameters including nutrition (amino acids, minerals, vitamins, sterols etc.), contaminants (mycotoxins, heavy metals, antibiotic residues etc.) and additives (xanthophyll, antioxidants etc.). The samples can be collected in just a few days by courier from neighbour countries.
Using a third party lab for routine quality control enables feed mills to ease the relationship with ingredient suppliers, as lab reports provide independent judgement of ingredient quality.
InVivo Labs Vietnam currently operates 100,000 analyses a year and plans to double its activity within 2 years. To achieve this target, the company has invested in additional analytical technologies (LC-MS/MS) and is building a 300 m2 extension which will be completed by the end of the year. The company has also recruited a chemist to develop new methods of analysis.