Bamboo charcoal and bamboo activated carbon have a number of potential benefits as a supplement for human consumption, or as an additive for animal feed. What exactly is it about this product that makes it so useful?
The unique cell structure of bamboo biomass, along with a high fixed carbon content when carbonized under ideal conditions, makes bamboo charcoal an extremely effective absorbent. Although even more effective when activated (in short meaning that the carbonized material has gone through additional processing to remove as much non fixed carbon particles as possible, thereby leaving a substance that has an extraordinarily high surface area), high quality bamboo charcoal that has been processed through pyrolysis and then ground into fine particles, is also effective and available at significantly lower cost.
Research has shown that bamboo charcoal has a number of benefits for livestock farms, some pertaining to the health of the animals themselves, and some more perfunctory. When it comes to livestock health, bamboo charcoal has increased in popularity for having the following key benefits:
(1) A reduction in the occurrence of water borne diseases - the high adsorptive surface of the bamboo charcoal attracts impurities from both water and feed, reducing their ability to become established in the animal's gut;
(2) An increase in the absorption of nutrients from feed, resulting in increased weight gain and faster growth periods.
Although most studies to date have been carried out on poultry, cattle and swine, in 2014 a peer reviewed publication detailed similar benefits on the use of bamboo charcoal in farmed tilapia.
The significant added benefit is that bamboo charcoal has proven itself to be highly effective in absorbing ammonia. This translates into a side benefit of giving livestock a bamboo charcoal additive being a reduction in the smell associated with the manure of a different livestock.
EcoPlanet Core Carbon and EcoPlanet Laboratories have been working on the refining of bamboo charcoal and bamboo activated carbon from a wide range of bamboo species, but predominantly targeting Bambusa balcooa and Oxytenanthera abyssinica from the Kowie Bamboo Farm in South Africa, as well as Guadua aculeata from EcoPlanet Bamboo Nicaragua. Although each of these species has unique properties, including different yields, calorific values and composition, they have all been shown to have beneficial properties as an additive in small quantities to animal feed.
Contact EcoPlanet Core Carbon for more information, or for purchase of bamboo charcoal and bamboo activated carbon.