February 5, 2015


University of Illinois studies corn byproducts' benefits for pig diets


Byproducts of corn that are produced from wet milling could contribute to pig diets; a research by the University of Illinois, US, is studying the possibility by examining the nutritional value of four such byproducts.


The research team, led by Hans H. Stein, an animal science researcher, had conducted experiments on high-fat corn germ (HFCG); corn bran; and liquid corn extractives (LCE).


These tests will help to develop a better understanding of energy concentration and amino acid digestibility from those byproducts.


At 30% of fat, HFCG is a high-fat product compared to 3% in corn, said Stein. While low in fat, corn bran is high in fiber.


The researchers also tested LCE by adding the substance to corn germ meal (CGM). The result is a new product that could be used as feed.


"By adding LCE to corn germ meal, we attempt to add value to both co-products," said Stein.


LCE can be employed as a feed or an additive to corn gluten feed.


Corn alone carries the highest level of digestible energy (DE) per kilogram of dry matter, and the biggest concentration of metabolizable energy (ME) at 3,871 kcal/kg dry matter.


DE / ME levels in byproducts are lower, with high-fat corn germ at 3,631 kcal/kg (DE) and 3,336 kcal/kg (ME); corn germ meal mixed with liquid corn extractives at 3,567 kcal/kg (DE) and 3,272 kcal/kg; liquid corn extractives at 2,485 kcal/kg (DE) and 3,102 kcal/kg (ME); and corn bran at 3,205 kcal/kg (DE) and 3,077 kcal/kg (ME).


On the other hand, the byproducts contained higher fiber concentrations.


"The (byproducts) are all lower energy than corn, but that doesn't mean we can't use them because there are some circumstances when we want lower energy, such as in diets for gestating sows", Stein explained.


"We don't want gestating sows to overeat high-energy products so it is good to have a high-fiber ingredient. Corn germ meal is very good for sows, and we can also utilise these ingredients in growing pig diets."


Also discovered during the research is the decline of amino acid (AA) digestibility in corn byproducts. Corn is higher than 75% in AA digestibility while the byproducts recorded more than 50%. The exception is corn bran which was revealed to be less than 50% in AA digestibility.


With the low AA digestibility of byproducts, diets will "require using more soybean meal or another protein source" to compensate, said Stein.


The research, "Energy concentration and amino acid digestibility in corn and corn coproducts from the wet-milling industry fed to growing pigs" had recently been published in the Journal of Animal Science.

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