Are Your Animals Getting All They Can Out of Corn?

why extrude corn?

On LinkedIn a few years ago, in a post, I asked “Have we gotten all that we can out of corn?” I also said that we intended to find out.

Over the past three years, we’ve been investing in and researching applying the high-shear dry extrusion process to cereal grains, such as corn.  Materials that are high in starch, such as cereal grains, have posed a challenge for processing by use of high-shear single screw extrusion. By applying our decades of experience in high-shear extrusion we have overcome those processing challenges and developed a High Shear Cereal Grain Extrusion processing solution (HSCGE.) We are now offering this HSCGE processing technology to our customers and prospects who are interested in making high-quality starch-based ingredients and products. We are investing in third party University research as well, to verify the nutritional and animal performance benefits of extruded grains with emphasis on corn.

Corn and other cereal grains are included in animal diets for many reasons, but one of them is because they supply a lot of dietary energy. Energy from the diet is needed by the body to perform basic functions and for increased performance of animals used for food.

I previously shared documentation that, high-shear dry extrusion is often used to increase the useful or available energy for animals (this is often referred to as metabolizable energy.) If dietary energy is not metabolizable, it is of no use to the animal. It’s completely lost to the surrounding environment.  Therefore, it is of interest to measure the metabolizable energy of high-shear dry extruded corn in order to determine the value of the process.

Data received from recent studies we have conducted with Dr. Parsons’ Lab at University of Illinois indicate the following:

Dave July Blog

Typically, corn is ground through a hammermill and included into various animal diets. In the above chart you can see, when raw, clean corn is processed through a hammermill. Metabolizable energy value reaches about 83% of the total energy in corn for use in poultry diets (metabolizable energy = useful for production purposes.) However, when the same ground in corn is put through our High Shear Cereal Grain extruder the percentage of metabolizable energy in corn increases to 95%.

In short, you benefit by having a significant amount more useful energy from your corn, this is due to the high starch gelatinization that occurs through high-shear dry extrusion. Speak with us for all the implications that go along with this finding.  As I posted a few years ago, we did indeed learn how much we can extract from corn. More to come as we continue to research and understand what we have, and now offer to you.

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