A comparison of two MSE products and Biomate


Lark L. Burnham, Ph.D.

Ruminant nutrition


Species of bacteria


The effectiveness of several DFM/probiotics on swine growth, feed efficiency, waste production, and pathogen reduction has been evaluated at several universities over the last two decades. Some microbial species, such as Lacrobacillus sp. and Enterococcus (Streptococcus) faecium, have been shown to significantly improve one or more of these characteristics. All products contain strains of Lactobacillus sp., but only MSE dry concentrate and Max contain S. faecium.


Biomate and Bacillus lichenformis have been evaluated in separate trials (Kornegay and Risley, 1996;and Davis et al., 2007, respectively). The former looked at effectiveness of pathogen reduction in feces, as well as gain and feed efficiency. There was no significant change in any criteria tested. A combination of Bacillus strains, including Bacillus lichenformis, was shown in the latter experiment to decrease the amount of time required to clean a pen. Although the numbers of viable organisms is not guaranteed, MSE dry concentrate does contain Bacilllus subtilis.


A microbial mixture similar to the one used in either MSE product has been sold specifically for waste reduction (Waste Clear). That product was phased out when it was shown these strains also improve growth performance and feed efficiency.


Numbers of viable microorganisms


Competition has been suggested to be most important aspect of direct-fed microbials or probiotics in the animal. Both species selection and number of viable microbes (indicated by CFU or colony forming unit), determine product effectiveness. A glance at the table below will clearly show that both MSE products have more total CFU than Biomate. In addition, only the MSE products guarantee amounts of individual strains. A guaranteed total is an ambiguous mixture, which may vary according to the price and availability of ingredients.


Microorganisms can be added in either of two forms, microbes only (both MSE products), or as an amalgamation of microbes (dead or alive), media, and the end-products of microbial metabolism (fermentation products, used in Biomate). Fermentation products are used frequently because they are less expensive. However, not all of these ingredients are beneficial or even desirable.



MSE Dry Conc.



L. acidophillus

113.4 million CFU/g

1.2 billion CFU/0.5 g

Total only

L. casei

113.4 million CFU/g

610 million CFU/0.5 g


Streptococcus faecium

113.4 million CFU/g

610 million CFU/0.5 g


Saccharomyces ceriviae

584 Million CFU/g

3 million CFU/0.5 g


Bacillus lichenformis



Total only

Bacillus subtilis

Not guaranteed amount


Total only

L. lactis



Total only

Total guaranteed analysis

924.2 million CFU/g

5.4 Billion CFU/0.5 g

330 million/g

Recommended dose

1 - 2 g/head/day

0.5 g/head/day

5 10 g/head/day


Incorporating MSE into your feeding program


A series of experiments conducted at Texas Tech University (Burnham et al., 2004a; and Burnham et al. 2004b) showed that MSE had the greatest impact on swine that were stressed, particularly during the nursery, grower, and late finishing phases. The greatest stress occurs at weaning, and whenever pigs are moved, mixed, or over-crowded. The addition of bentonite (also called Montmorillonite) at the rate of 40 lb./ton during the first two weeks of the nursery period, along with MSE, will dramatically reduce the incidence of diarrhea and death loss.

Higher levels of MSE dry concentrate can be fed for short periods to decrease the impact of the major stresses listed above. Diarrhea and death loss can also be reduced by giving 1 cc of MSE Drench orally during processing.


Literature cited


Burnham, L. L., C. R. Richardson, A. Guye, G. A. Nunnery, R. A. M. Schmitt, D. A. Haverkamp, and S. W. Kim. Growth and carcass characteristics of growing-finishing pigs fed either an antibiotic or a probiotic. http://naturs-way.com/natural_pig_production/antibiotics_vs_probiotics_exp..htm


Burnham, L. L., C. R. Richardson, A. Guye, G. A. Nunnery, R. A. M. Schmitt, D. P. Duke, D. A. Haverkamp, and S. W. Kim. Growth and carcass characteristics of growing-finishing pigs fed diets containing peanut hulls, with or without added probiotic. http://naturs-way.com/natural_pig_production/peanut_hulls_and_mse_exp.htm


Kornegay, E. T., C. R. Risley. Nutrient digestibilities of a corn-soybean meal diet as influenced by Bacillus products fed to finishing swine. J ANIM SCI October 1, 2010 88:3320-3326. http://jas.fass.org/content/74/4/799.abstract?sid=9504e90d-63c3-44ce-ad08-69b50df9ea13


Davis, M. E., T. Parott, D. C. Brown, B. Z. de Rodas, Z. B. Johnson, C. V. Maxwell, and T. Rehberger. Effect of a Bacillus-based direct-fed microbial feed supplement on growth performance and pen cleaning characteristics of growing-finishing pigs. J ANIM SCI December 1, 2010 88:3880-3886. http://jas.fass.org/content/86/6/1459.abstract?sid=9504e90d-63c3-44ce-ad08-69b50df9ea13