Safety and efficacy of <em>Lactobacillus plantarum</em> NCIMB 42150 as a silage additive for all animal species
The EFSA Panel on Additives and Products or Substances used in Animal Feed (FEEDAP) was asked to deliver a scientific opinion on the safety and efficacy of a specific strain of Lactobacillus plantarum when used as a technological additive intended to improve ensiling at a proposed application rate of 1 × 108 colony forming unit (CFU)/kg fresh material. L. plantarum is considered by EFSA to be suitable for the qualified presumption of safety approach to safety assessment and not to require specific demonstration of safety other than demonstrating the absence of resistance to antibiotics of human and veterinary significance. As the identity of the strain was clearly established and as no antibiotic resistance was detected, the use of the strain in the production of silage is presumed safe for livestock species, consumers of products from animals fed treated silage and the environment. In the absence of data, no conclusion can be drawn on the skin and eye irritancy or skin sensitisation of the additive. The additive should be considered as a potential respiratory sensitiser. Five studies with laboratory-scale silos were made using forage of differing water-soluble carbohydrate content. Replicate silos containing forages treated at the proposed application rate were compared to identical silos containing the same but untreated forage. In addition, in four studies, formic acid was included as positive control. The mini-silos were then stored for 90–103 days at 20–24°C. After opening, the contents of the silos were analysed. Results showed that this strain of L. plantarum has the potential to improve the production of silage from easy, moderately difficult and difficult to ensile forage species by increasing the production of lactic acid, reducing the pH and increasing the preservation of dry matter when used at an application rate of 1 × 108 CFU/kg.