Edible bird’s nests (EBN) found in Malaysia are from the swiftlet species. Their size is about that of a sparrow with wingspan wider than that of a pigeon. Swiftlets feed on insects caught in flight such as from the order winged ants, fig wasps, bees, flies, small beetles, leafhoppers and mayflies. They construct their nests with glutinous strands of starch like saliva produced by a pair of large, salivary glands under their tongue and thereafter mate and breed their young in the nest. Edible-Bird Nest is produced by swiftlet bird from their salivary glands and this high value secretion is called edible-bird nest which is consumed.
Swiftlets build their nests using fluid released from their salivary glands, which harden on exposure to air. There are two species of edible nest-producing swiftlets, namely aerodramus fuciphagus and Aerodramus maximus, both are commonly found in southeast Asian countries. Edible bird’s nests harvested from caves and bird nests from premises specially made for the swiftlet industry.
Research on edible bird's nest shows nutritional contents of carbohydrates, amino acids and minerals, with Glycoproteins in carbohydrate being the main ingredient. Swiftlet nest is rich in sialic acid which is purported to contribute to neurological and intellectual development in infants. Amino acids and minerals are also important components of edible bird nest. The amino acid contents consist of tree non-essential types: aspartic acid, glutamic acid and praline acid; and two essential types: threonine and valine. They contribute to normal body functions such as immune system and tissue repair.
There are two species of edible nest-producing swiftlets, namely aerodramus fuciphagus and Aerodramus maximus, both are commonly found in southeast Asian countries.
These nests are produced by edible-bird nest swiftlets in premises where the parameters are similar to the natural cave dwelling of edible-bird nest swiftlets eg. House EBN
Ranching Edible-Bird Nest Produced by edible-bird nest swiftlets from their salivary glands and this high value secretion is called edible-bird nest which is consumed or used by humans.
Raw Clean Edible Bird's Nest.
This is Edible Bird Nest harvested from ranches that has undergone cleaning processes such as sorting, soaking, picking of feathers and impurities, moulding, drying, grading and packing. This also stipulates the quality and authenticity requirement for the raw EBN from the perspectives of microbial load/contamination, nutritional content (protein, minerals, moisture) and contamination from heavy metals (lead, arsenic, mercury, cadmium and other metals under the control of Ministry of Health, Malaysia (Food Act 1985 and Food Regulation 1985) and residue (particularly nitrites (NO2) and nitrate).
Raw Unclean Edible Bird's Nest.
Edible Bird's Nest harvested from caves and ranches which may include sorting, grading, trimming, weighing and packing without any cleaning process. These nests are produced by edible-bird nest swiftlets in premises where the parameters are similar to the natural cave dwelling of edible-bird nest swiftlets. eg, House EBN