Innovative research

We develop all our feed products out of the findings of our rigorous research. This is how we bring give our customers a true advantage in their competitive markets

Knowledge is at the root of our feed business, which is why we’re so invested in it.

But we only bring real value to our customers when we translate this knowledge into practical applications: feed products that boost agricultural productivity and animal health, while reducing the country’s water footprint.

Science unlocks real benefits for our customers
Over the years, we’ve formulated a number of new products that are unique to Saudi Arabian farming conditions.

Our biggest success is WAFI, our complete feed for livestock. Since we launched WAFI in 2005, it’s had strong year-on-year growth – every single day, over one million animals are nourished with WAFI feed. Our product range includes WAFI, WAFI Breeding and Lamb Starter.

We also leave no stone unturned as we innovate progressive feeds for non-livestock species like cattle, horses, poultry, fish and shrimp.

Science is the bedrock of our products
Our Research & Development team is featured in a long list of scientific journals. See where we’ve been published here.

Questions from our customers
Do you have a question that hasn’t been covered below? Please let us know and we’ll be happy to respond and add it to this list.

What’s the biggest challenge for ARASCO Feed research?
Attracting passionate people is our number one challenge.
Our R&D team is the core of our operations. We want to have young Saudi talent join us and share our passion for animal nutrition with us.

But recruiting the right people for our team is not as easy as it sounds - firstly, there are sadly few youngsters with an interest in animal nutrition, so Saudi universities only deliver a limited numbers of graduates. Often, those graduates haven’t actually specialized in animal nutrition but in one of the other animal sciences.

At ARASCO, we refuse to accept that we can’t develop the core of our business with Saudi talent; so, even if they hold majors not geared towards nutrition, we’ll further educate them ourselves. Finding young potential researchers is certainly our single biggest issue.

With whom does ARASCO cooperate for research?
We don’t want to duplicate what other reputed parties have already proven. We put our efforts into researching topics that haven’t yet been researched: topics that are specific to the Kingdom; issues that can improve business for our customers. So, depending on the subject that needs better understanding, we work with our suppliers, customers, governmental institutes and universities, in the Kingdom and elsewhere.

What does Dr. WAFI mean?
Dr. WAFI is our camel health programme, which looks at the detection and prevention of camel-specific diseases. It’s widely understood that these diseases are often related to feed and nutrition, but in reality, this isn’t the case. We’ve developed diagnostic kits and vaccines in good cooperation with the Saudi authorities and foreign research institutes. Globally renowned camel diseases expert, Prof. Dr. Mansour Hussain, leads the programme for us at ARASCO R&D.

Why do we need research when we know so much already?
Modern science has certainly illuminated a lot for us, but there are still many unanswered questions - not only for ARASCO, but worldwide.

Animal nutrition is complex and we aim to lead the way in this field. Our harsh climate and environment is still unknown to research institutes elsewhere. Epidemic diseases aren’t under control and this means we need feeds that fortify agricultural animals.

On the other hand, we have an innovative view on feed for ruminants (camels, sheep, goats, beef cattle and even dairy cattle) - a view to bring sustainable farming to the Kingdom. For us, sustainable farming means addressing both water scarcity and the profitability of our farming customers. More research is needed to develop this view further into practice.

How practical is ARASCO’s Research?
Our research is very practical: We do it at commercial farms. We run sizable trials in which we feed groups of sheep differently; both experts and laymen evaluate the carcasses and then sample the cooked meat at tastings. During the tastings, we document expert and layman opinions on the smell, taste, bite, juiciness and texture of the meat.

In poultry production, we benchmark and design our research against the best USA farms. Because of this, we know that our feeds are the highest performance (Average Daily Gain) and Feed Conversion Index (FCI) even as we limit our raw materials to comply with halal criteria.

We ran unique feed preference tests on shrimp, with statistically reliable outcomes. Now, we know better than most what shrimps like!

What can we expect from ARASCO research in the coming years?
Our biggest priority is to get to really understand how far we can develop ruminant feeding for our own unique Saudi circumstances. We aim to bring livestock feeds to the beef and dairy sectors and we’re making progress in trialling our knowledge. The life cycle of a dairy cow is long – so we need to persevere, since these trials take years rather than weeks.

Next, we intend to further fortify broilers against the Kingdom’s difficult conditions; so we’ll focus on gut health, immune support and animal performance.

We’ve developed several concepts for laying hens. Here, educating consumers about the health benefits of eating fortified table eggs is key; we’re very open to discuss this with you if you’re an interested layer farmer.

We’ve also invested in aquaculture production equipment and research. Over the past two years, we’ve formulated fish and shrimp feeds that compete with best in the world. We’re looking to cooperate to further develop the aquaculture industry and we’re very interested in meeting with other companies who want to bring aquaculture to the next level.