Extrusion Cost of Grains and Soybeans for Swine – Can it be Justified?
The feed industry is experiencing high ingredients cost due to the drought. The cost of corn quadrupled while soybeans and soybean meal cost at least double what it was in the 1990’s. To deal with this issue, swine producers and integrators may consider some options to include:
1) Finding cheaper alternatives to corn, soybeans and soybean meal.
2) Enhancing the utilization of those ingredients through heat treatment.
Years ago, Kansas State University (KSU) investigated the value of extruding grains and soybeans for nursery, growing-finishing pig and lactating sows.
Below are some of their reported findings:
- In the 1990 and 1991 KSU Swine Day reports, it was documented that dry extrusion of sorghum and soybeans improved growth performance and nutrient digestibility by 5%-20% in finishing pigs compared to feeding a ground sorghum-soybean meal-soy oil based control diet.
- In the 1992 KSU Swine Day report, it was concluded that the nutritional value of corn, sorghum, wheat and barley were improved by dry extrusion of diets for finishing pigs.
– In that report, diets with corn supported greater average daily gain (ADG) and greatest efficiency of gain while barley based diets were the lowest. However, extrusion improved feed/gain by 4%, 9%, 6% and 3% for corn, sorghum, wheat and barley, respectively.
– Digestibility of dry matter and nitrogen closely paralleled differences in feed efficiency.
- In a trial with lactating sows, KSU researchers concluded that sows fed extruded ingredients tended to have greater piglets’ survival and heavier litters, with decreased average daily feed intake compared to those fed control diets.
As they suggested at that time (1990’s), those advantages have to outweigh the extra cost of extrusion of grains and soybeans. This was at the time when corn cost 1/4 of what it costs now while soybean cost was less than half of what it is now.
On the other hand, the cost of extrusion has not risen significantly so one can make the conclusion that enhancing the grains and soybeans nutrients digestibility and pig performance in today’s market can be well justified to increase the profitability for the producers.