Scientific Opinion on the safety and efficacy of Lactobacillus plantarum (DSM 12836) as a silage additive for all species
Lactobacillus plantarum is a technological additive intended to improve the ensiling process at a proposed dose of 1.0 x 108 CFU/kg fresh material. The bacterial species L. plantarum is considered by the European Food Safety Authority to be suitable for the Qualified Presumption of Safety approach. As the identity of the strain has been clearly established and as no antibiotic resistance was detected, the use of the strain in the production of silage is considered safe for livestock species, consumers of products from animals fed the treated silage and for the environment. Evidence of a lack of irritancy was provided for one formulation of the additive. It is unlikely that considering the nature of the alternative food grade excipients, different results would be obtained for other formulations containing L. plantarum DSM 12836. However, due to the lack of information and its proteinaceous nature, the active agent has the potential to be a skin/respiratory sensitizer. Three studies with laboratory-scale silos are described, each lasting at least 90 days, made using samples of grass forage of differing water-soluble carbohydrate content and representing material easy to ensile, moderately difficult to ensile and difficult to ensile. In each case, replicate silos containing treated forage were compared to identical silos containing the same untreated forage at 20 ºC. The additive consistently showed the potential to improve the production of silage from all forages by a reduction of pH and increased preservation of dry matter.