Corn-based ethanol production in the United States allows livestock and poultry producers the availability of dried distiller grains for use in rations. As with any by-product, the quality of these ingredients is highly variable. Because distiller grains are the by-product of ethanol fermentation, wet distiller grains (WDG) and distiller grains with solubles (DDGS) contain very low levels of mold and wild yeast, but quality can degrade rapidly if not stored correctly.
Managing feed costs has never been more critical to livestock and poultry producer profitability. But, as producers consider changing diet formulations to lower feed costs, it's critical to stress the importance of ingredient quality management. Understanding the risk factors associated with feed ingredients — new and old — is both practical and important.
Supplementing vitamins in the right amounts at the right time is critical for balanced animal nutrition. But balancing an animal’s nutritional needs and a diet’s formulation cost can become a nutritionist’s nightmare when vitamin availability is compromised, or prices are unusually high. Worse yet, reactive premix ingredients – choline chloride and inorganic trace minerals – can have an aggressive effect on vitamin destruction via oxidation. To manage vitamins costs, protecting vitamins from oxidation is key.
Not only are vitamins involved in over 30 metabolic reactions, but they also play key roles in managing internal cellular stress, immunological defense systems and the overall health of animals. So, although they make up less than 1 percent of the diet, vitamins are vital ingredients for optimal growth, health, reproduction and performance of livestock and poultry.
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