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DDGS Trial Proves Successful as Fish Feed

by 5m Editor
20 February 2009, at 12:00am

US - The U.S. Grains Council recognized an opportunity to increase the utilization of distiller's dried grains with solubles (DDGS), a co-product of U.S. ethanol production, in the rapidly growing fish farming (aquaculture) industry.

According to Dr. Budi Tangendjaja, USGC consultant in Southeast Asia, aquaculture is one of the fastest growing food producing industries in the world. The Council embarked on an initiative to test DDGS as a potential ingredient for feeding fish in Vietnam due to the anticipated economic and nutritional value, writes Mike Deering and Marri Carrow for the US Grains Council.

The Council embarked on an initiative to test DDGS as a potential ingredient for feeding fish in Vietnam due to the anticipated economic and nutritional value.

The trials were conducted using Vietnamese catfish tra, common carp and red tilapia. "The ethanol co-product has shown to be economically feasible for animal feed especially in dairy and beef cattle, swine and poultry diets. However, very limited information The trials were conducted using Vietnamese catfish tra, common carp and red tilapia. "The ethanol co-product has shown to be was available for feeding DDGS to fish, despite the given benefits of the ingredient such as high protein content (28 percent) and a relatively cheaper cost," said Dr. Tangendjaja.

The results of using DDGS at a 15 percent inclusion rate in all three species concluded the co-product slightly improved the growth rate and reduced mortality. Feeding DDGS at a 15 percent inclusion ratio also improved feed conversion in catfish from 3.01 in the control diet to 1.95 in the DDGS diet. The feeding trials proved feeding DDGS to all three species did not negatively impact meat quality nor did it affect color of the fillet, which was a preconceived concern of end-users. "There is an indication that feeding DDGS at a 15 percent inclusion ratio would improve feed utilization, enhance growth performance and decrease the cost of a feed formula," said Tangendjaja.

DDGS Exports Skyrocket, Support Ethanol Industry. Increasing distiller's dried grains with solubles (DDGS) exports is critical to the continued success of the U.S. ethanol industry, according to Dan Keefe, U.S. Grains Council manager of international operations for DDGS. "As ethanol margins have been pinched in recent months, DDGS have become a more important product for maintaining ethanol plant profitability and continued operation. This is vital to U.S. farmers and rural America," said Keefe.

"The Council is working around the world 24 hours a day to increase awareness of U.S. DDGS as a feed ingredient and expand demand for the ethanol co-product. We are the only organization conducting hands-on market development programs to increase utilization of the co-product in animal rations across the globe. Thanks to our producer checkoff and agribusiness members' investments in the Council, we are getting the job done."

Specifically, according to USDA's Foreign Agricultural Service, the 2008 calendar year concluded with 4.5 million metric tons of U.S. DDGS entering the overseas marketplace, up 91 percent from 2007. The 2008 quantity translates into $978,648 for the U.S. ethanol industry, up 149 percent from $391,964 in 2007. Council programs launched in 2002 and vigorously continued in subsequent years introduced the co-product in overseas markets unfamiliar with the product. For example, Turkey, the third largest DDGS market, imported 465,212 tons of U.S. DDGS in 2008, up 241 percent from 2007. The Council recently introduced DDGS to Egypt for the first time and as a result 42,901 tons were purchased in 2008.

5m Editor

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