Date: 16/11/2022

Hydrolysed proteins are a nutritional support highly used in the food industry to enrich food. This process allows for creating formulations that are rich and with the necessary nutrients in various sectors of the market, like food and beverages, that are destined, for instance, to malnourished patients and other clinical problems related to digestive and absorptive problems. Furthermore, in control of allergy, in the processing of embedded and in the creation of nutritious solutions of animal feed, providing easily digested proteins and nutritional enrichment.

The enzymatic hydrolysis process changes the biological properties of the proteins through a process that can be worked in soft temperatures, which allows for the pH to works close to neutrality, with high specificity and efficiency, generating smaller chains of amino acids that produces well-defined peptides – as we will see further on.Besides, hydrolysis can improve nutritional and functional features of food, since the chemical, physical and immunological properties are changed too.

But what is the enzymatic hydrolysis of proteins? How is this enzymatic process made? Why use such process in animal feed formulation? These inquiries guide the studies and the choice of using it to various targets of inclusion of hydrolysed proteins in different organisms' eating patterns.

How is the hydrolysis process?

Prior to understanding the multiple benefits of hydrolysed proteins, the first step is to comprehend how this process happens. We understand that there are different techniques to achieve a richly formulated protein to accomplish its nutritional goals. However, the enzymatic formula is the most suitable for being simpler and efficient and, mostly, does not require strict chemical methods to be produced.

The enzymatic hydrolysis process happens in a sequel in the following order: the raw material of animal origin is reserved and goes through milling. Afterward, it goes into the process along with the water free of contamination, pH, temperature and reactor pressure adjustment. After that, we include an enzyme controlled for a specific period of time and go through an inactivation method. This process transforms the hydrolyzed, which will pass through filtration, centrifugation and separation, also through sterilization, drying and packaging. Ending in Hydrolyzed Protein as a final product, destined to various sectors of the industry (SOARES, 2019, p. 22) [1].

As one can notice on the description above, the transformation of the raw material in hydrolyzed protein is realized through phases that lasts specified time, whose purpose is to obtain a material with low minerals and fats (PASUPULEKI et al., 2010) [2] and nutritionally enriched to attend a specific demand.

Additionally, and especially, this process intends to break the amino acids that compose proteins and create a “low molecular weight product, due to the short chains of amino acids, that promote nutrient absorption, making them more digestible and facilitating their passage amongst the animals intestinal membrane” (AKSNES et al., 2006) [3].

Above we’ve seen that the hydrolyzed proteins fulfill functions in various sectors of the food industry. However, we’ll stick, from now on, to animal nutrition and the ingredients that compose the diets of many species in the farming sector that needs, increasingly, a balanced and rich nutrition that, besides improving digesting and animal health, offers a better cost-benefit to the producer and care with environment preservation.

As accentuated by the Aquaculture Brasil magazine (2021) [4], the Hydrolyzed Protein of animal co-products is obtained through the beneficiation of guts and entrails, which eventually becomes a sustainable solution to the environment, due to a greater use of the co-products of birds and other species in the production of animal feed, which reduces the amount of residues on the environment and diminish, in the case of aquaculture, the pollution of the irrigation water.

“The utilization of the raw material generated by the animal processing industries is a way of compensating the social and environmental impacts caused by this sector, since it destinies the generated residues in a conscious way” (SOARES, 2019, p. 20) [1].

Challenges of the Food Industry

Is necessary that we specify the challenges found by the producers in the Animal Nutrition sector, being the investment in animal feed and ingredients the part that needs more care and expenses by the growers, regardless the field, whether in aquaculture, and its different fields- shrimp farming, pisciculture, among others, in pig farming or even in pet feeding.

To grasp the scale of the nutritional challenges of the farmed animals, according to Agenda 2030 of the United Nations Organization (UNO) [5], the aquaculture produced in captivity will match the production of deep-sea fishing, and the production’s evolution cause a problem to the producers, bearing in mind the necessity of feeding the farmed animals and meet the nutritional requirements of different species.

As pointed out by Soares (2019), the intensification of the cultures is only viable with the development of balanced diets that aim at improving physiological condition of the animals, as well as a rich food that provides a better zootechnical performance of the cultivated species. For that matter, the producers’ challenge is to find a food whose cost-benefit is proven, that has nutritional value and meet the growing nutritional requirements, promoting better performance and health in the animal performance.

Through research and innovation, the answer to these and other questions about the use of the hydrolyzed enzymatic protein and its benefits were found by BRF Ingredients, which developed a formulation that is balanced and rich in bioactive peptides, with scientifically proven benefits, focused on the various sectors in the growing, amongst them, the Chicken Hydrolyzed Proteins (CPH) BioActio Health & Performance, a topic that we will come back to later.

Why using BioActio Hydrolyzed Proteins by BRF Ingredients?

Produced to improve animal feed performance, BioActio Hydrolyzed Proteins are functional foods formulated through the enzymatic hydrolysis process described above. This process generates smaller amino acids chains, the bioactive peptides, which offers several benefits to the animals.

BRF Ingredients has a series of formulations in its portfolio that meet the nutritional demands of the animals, generating value to the products too, like the BioActio Health & Performance Chicken Hydrolyzed Protein and the BioActio Health & Palatability Chicken Liver Hydrolyzed Protein. They offer benefits as such: high content of protein, high digestibility and high palatability, and are produced with fresh feedstock and designated origin, by poultry and swine by-products; as well as low molecular mass, balanced amino acids and bioactive peptides profile.

Besides that, when it comes to digestibility, BRF Ingredients Hydrolyzed Proteins, for instance the BioActio Health & Performance, present an apparent digestibility coefficient (ADC) usually above 90% in Tilapias, Dogs and Cats diets.

The functional properties present in the BioActio line stands out, ensuring food and ration richer in nutrients and providing improvements on the intestinal morphology, better resistance to infectious diseases, increasing animals health and survival rate, as well as improving animal’s immune system producing antibodies and anti-hypertensive action.

What are bioactive peptides in proteins?

The bioactive peptides are the result of a chemical reaction that, using water, breaks a molecule in two or more parts. It indicates that, by being applied to a protein, this process breaks the substance in smaller amino acid chains and it allows an improvement in the nutrient and vitamins absorption, optimizing the essential amino acids used on the animal body.

For that matter, the peptides reach the animal bloodstream in a more direct and efficient way, creating benefits such as the increasing of feeding efficiency, acceleration of species growth, improvement in the animal physiology with stimulation of the immune and nervous system, freeing the animals of stress, among others pathologies.

Therefore, the bioactive peptides generated by the BioActio Health & Performance Hydrolyzed Proteins can have antimicrobial, antioxidant, antihypertensive and immunomodulating properties and act in the improvement of the feed conversion ratio.


Therefore, in front of everything exposed, the benefits of the use of hydrolyzed proteins are scientifically proven as the quoted research sources shows, as well as the studies and innovations of BRF Ingredients in the formulation of rich, balanced and equilibrated food, which allows an improvement in the animals zootechnical indexes including the BioActio Hydrolyzed Proteins in animals diet in aquaculture, pig farming and pet feeding.

The benefits of enzymatic hydrolysis also collaborate to the environment preservation, reducing residues and reusing animals byproducts, besides generating value to the producers, allowing a better cost-benefit between the investment in the food and the final income of the farm animal.

Know all the benefits of the Enzymatic Hydrolysis process and the BioActio Health & Performance and Bioactio Health & Palatability Hydrolyzed Proteins.


[1] SOARES, M. Avaliação de hidrolisados proteicos de subprodutos de frango e suíno na nutrição do camarão-branco-do-pacífico. Tese (Doutorado em Aquicultura) – Centro de Ciências Agrárias da Universidade Federal de Santa Catarina. Florianópolis, pp. 99. 2019. Disponível em:

[2] PASUPULEKI, V. K., DEMAIN, A. L., editors. Protein hydrolysates in biotechnology. New York: Springer Science, p. 11–32, 2010. Disponível em: Protein Hydrolysates in Biotechnology | SpringerLink. Acesso em: ago.2022.

[3] AKSNES, Anders et al. Inclusion of size fractionated fish hydrolysate in high plant protein diets for Atlantic cod, Gadus morhua. Aquaculture, [s.l.], v. 261, n. 3, p.1102-1110, dez. 2006. Elsevier BV. Acesso: ago. 2022.

[4] Aquaculture: Proteína Hidrolisada de Frango na Alimentação de Larvas e Alevinos de Tilápia. Disponível: Acesso em ago.2022.

[5] FAO – Organização das Nações Unidas para Alimentação e Agricultura. The State of World Fisheries and Aquaculture 2018. Disponível em: Acesso: ago. 2022.