The Sorghum Checkoff is paying Kansas State University to do a study on the nutrient profile and feeding value of sorghum and sorghum distillers grains in livestock diets.
The study will be similar to those done to determine nutrient values for corn DDGS. Information about the value of corn DDGS in swine diets has led to more producer confidence in the feed and has increased their domestic and export value.
The first step in understanding the feeding value of sorghum DDGS is establishing nutrient values for use in diet formulation. A complete nutrient profile of sorghum DDGS has not been published. Partial nutrient values from individual sorghum DDGS samples are available from suppliers or from individual research trials. However, complete nutrient analysis are not available from individual sources, much less from multiple sources of sorghum DDGS.
After nutrient values are established, feeding trials will demonstrate the impact of sorghum DDGS on pig performance and carcass quality traits. Numerous experiments have been conducted with corn DDGS demonstrating that approximately 30 percent corn DDGS can be fed without reducing pig performance.
Feeding 30 percent DDGS will reduce carcass yield and increases the softness of the belly and backfat due to the high unsaturation of corn oil.
Sorghum growers expect that sorghum DDGS would have less negative impact on carcass fat softness than corn DDGS because hogs feed sorghum grain instead of corn have firmer fat and lower saturation.
This K-State study will also measure the influence of sorghum DDGS on pork quality attributes. Sorghum DDGS, because of its low unsaturated fatty acid profile relative to corn, could be an ingredient to help lower diet costs for producers and at the same time enhance pork quality relative to pigs fed diets containing corn DDGS.