Biofuels Co-Products in Feeds

The ethanol industry is one of the most rapidly growing segments of U.S. agriculture. Distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS) is one by-product of ethanol production. Most (~98%) of the DDGS in North America comes from dry-grind plants that produce ethanol for use in oxygenated gasoline. The remaining 1 to 2% of DDGS is produced by the alcohol beverage industry.

Because of the large supply of DDGS available to the feed and livestock industry, researchers have been evaluating the nutritional value of DDGS and developing feeding recommendations for its use in livestock and poultry feeds.

Like the U.S. ethanol industry, the U.S. biodiesel industry is rapidly growing. The primary by-product of biodiesel production is crude glycerine (glycerol). With the growing supply of crude glycerine being produced, new alternative uses are being developed for it including its use as an energy source in livestock and poultry feeds.

Scientists in the Department of Animal Science and other departments at the University of Minnesota have collaborated with scientists from other Land Grant universities and the USDA-ARS in research to study utilization of by-products from the ethanol and biodiesel industries as a feed ingredient.

Dr. Jerry Shurson has developed a website that serves as a source for the most current information on the evaluation and limitations of feeding biofuels co-products to livestock and poultry. For more information, please visit the Biofuels Co-products in Animal Feeds website.