The aim of the project is to quantify sources of variability in wheat DDGS a co-product of the modern bioethanol and distilling industries, identify opportunities to enhance its value, to consider innovative processes to reduce fibre content (for non-ruminants) and to quantify the contribution of the co-products to the overall GHG balance of UK crop, livestock and ethanol production.
The ENBBIO LINK project is a collaborative 3 year project which started in October 2010, and involves 25 industry and academic partners, sponsored by Defra through the Sustainable Livestock Production LINK programme.
The use of protein concentrates in livestock feeding is an essential feature of the modern livestock industry. However UK agriculture’s reliance on imported soya as the main protein source has recently raised environmental concerns relating to land use change and, specifically, the release of carbon from cropping of high carbon stock soils. Distillers Dried Grains with Solubles (DDGS) may provide an opportunity for the UK feed industry to have large quantities of a consistent and high quality co-product which can have a significant positive impact on energy and nutrient utilisation, and provide a cost-effective alternative to imported proteins. DDGS can arise from a variety of sources including wheat (W-DDGS; bioethanol production) and barley (B-DDGS; fermentation / distillation industry). The industry’s goal of reducing its reliance on imported feedstuffs including soya bean meal requires optimisation of all the processes involved in manufacture, to ensure that nutritive value is maximised.
Prior to the establishment of a UK wheat-bioethanol biofuel industry 250 kt/annum of W-DDGS from the distilling industry was used in animal feeds, but supply will increase to 960 kt/annum with the opening of new bioethanol refineries by Ensus and Vivergo during the lifetime of the project, and will increase further if other companies come on stream. The total of 960 kt of W-DDGS contains 307 kt of wheat protein (320 g CP/kg W-DDGS), equivalent to 0.40 of the 770 kt/annum of protein imported via soyabean meal. This quantity of W-DDGS will also supply 8.6 kt of P (9 g P/kg W-DDGS); 0.05 of the P required by UK livestock assuming full bioavailability. Production of W-DDGS on this scale provides opportunities for significant reductions in imported feed materials. Because higher inclusion rates of W-DDGS are expected in UK livestock diets, there is an urgent need for research on nutritional values and effects of dietary inclusion rates of this potentially valuable raw material for all species.
The aim of this research is to quantify sources of variability in W-DDGS, identify opportunities to enhance their value, to consider innovative processes to reduce fibre content (for non-ruminants) and to quantify the contribution of the co-products to the overall GHG balance of UK crop, livestock and ethanol production.
The Objectives are to:
1. Quantify the chemical composition of UK sources of W-DDGS and other co-products including development of appropriate methodologies,
2. Identify the limitations associated with feeding UK sources of W-DDGS in both ruminant and non-ruminant species,
3. Identify routes to improving nutritional value of DDGS through production of consistent products from modern biorefineries, making use of process modifications in the biorefinery, and the use of enzymes to improve animal performance,
4. Test the modified and improved DDGS products using ruminant and non-ruminant species
5. Quantify the overall benefits of DDGS production on reducing diffuse pollutants (methane, N and P), and enhancing home-grown protein production,
6. Ensure effective knowledge transfer of research outputs.