Working Paper

Estimating Displacement Ratios of Wheat DDGS in Animal Feed Rations in Great Britain

Much previous work on this subject has been based on simple assessments of the comparative protein and energy content of distillers’ grains. In reality, however, livestock diets are formulated based on least-cost models that include information on a range of nutritional characteristics. The ICCT commissioned Premier Nutrition to construct a feed formulation model to represent the Great British feed market, as an example of a European feed market. The total market modeled was 13.2Mt and included pigs, poultry and ruminants.

The key findings of the study are:

  • In Great Britain, wheat DDGS has a considerably higher value in ruminant feeds than it has in pig and poultry feeds.
  • Where the availability of wheat DDGS is limited, it is used almost exclusively in ruminant feeds and primarily replaces soya bean meal and mid-proteins (maize gluten feed, extracted sunflower meal) with little cereal replacement.
  • As wheat DDGS availability increases, greater quantities are used in pig and poultry feeds with soya bean meal and cereals being the main commodities replaced.
  • With a high DDGS availability of 1.62mt (12.4% of total feed) approximately 59% is used in ruminant feeds with the remainder equally utilised in pig and poultry feeds. Soya bean meal replacement rate was 0.29 (pig 0.25, poultry 0.37, ruminant 0.28) and cereal 0.28. Other commodities replaced by wheat DDGS included extracted sunflower meal (0.18), maize gluten feed (0.13) and palm kernel extractions (0.12).
  • Doubling the price of soya increased DDGS usage marginally to 1.7mt. This then represents the maximum available GB market for wheat DDGS using current typical feed specifications.
  • Halving the crystalline amino acid price, and offering crystalline arginine and isoleucine (not currently commercially available), increased DDGS usage only marginally but dramatically reduced soya bean meal usage.
  • Whilst there are differences in both feed commodities used in the EU and the percentage feed allocated to ruminants, pigs and poultry, it is not believed that these are of a sufficient magnitude to fundamentally affect the conclusion that DDGS will be preferentially utilised in ruminant feeds. However, the replacement rates will differ from country to country.

It is concluded that the replacement values for wheat DDGS in a market are complex and depend upon a number of factors including the species mix, the quantity of DDGS available, and the amount and price of other commodities available.


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