High-Protein Distillers Grains Replace Soy

US - As swine producers continue to find ways to survive in today's economic situation, researchers at the University of Illinois are exploring alternative feedstuffs in growing pig diets to provide producers with more options.
calendar icon 5 February 2010
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Hans H. Stein, University of Illinois associate professor in the department of animal sciences, said his team's research has shown that high-protein distillers dried grains can replace 100 per cent of the soybean meal in a diet fed to finishing pigs without any effect on growth performance or carcass characteristics as long as the diets are fortified with crystalline lysine, threonine and tryptophan.

High-protein distillers dried grains are produced through a fractionation technology. In this process, bran and germ are removed from the corn, resulting in endosperm that is used for ethanol production. The co-product that results is high-protein distillers dried grains, which contains between 41 to 45 per cent crude protein. It contains more protein, but less fat and less fibre, than conventional distillers dried grains with solubles.

Results of the research showed that replacing soybean meal with high-protein distillers dried grains had no effect on average daily gain, average daily feed intake or feed conversion. It also revealed that high-protein distillers dried grains contain more digestible energy than corn.

Professor Stein said: "When 70 per cent of a swine producer's variable cost is attributed to feed, it's important to let producers know they have options. In this case, we can let economics decide which option is best because the pigs don't care. If corn and soybean meal are expensive, high-protein distillers dried grains may help lower feed costs."

This research was published in a December 2009 issue of the Journal of Animal Science. The research team included Beob Kim and Grant Petersen of the University of Illinois, and Gary Allee and Buddy Hinson of the University of Missouri.

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