UK pig industry looks to reduce soya reliance

A major project is investigating how distillers’ dried grains with solubles can help reduce the pig industry’s reliance on imported proteins, including soya. Known as the ‘ENBBIO LINK project’, it will assess both the environmental and nutritional benefits of bioethanol co-products.

A major project is investigating how distillers’ dried grains with solubles can help reduce the pig industry’s reliance on imported proteins, including soya.

Known as the ‘ENBBIO LINK project’, it will assess both the environmental and nutritional benefits of bioethanol co-products. The British Pig Executive is one of 25 industry and academic partners investing in the collaborative three-year project, which started in October 2010. It is sponsored by government through the Sustainable Livestock Production LINK program.

Reliance on imported soya as the main protein source in the UK pig industry has recently raised environmental concerns relating to land use change and, specifically, the release of carbon from cropping of high carbon stock soils. “DDGS provides an opportunity to supply the UK feed industry with large quantities of a consistent and high-quality co-product which could have a positive impact on energy and nutrient utilization and, at the same time, reduce levels of imported proteins,” said BPEX environment project manager Anna Davis. “This would, in turn, help pig producers manage their feed costs more effectively in the long term.”

The project aims to:

  • Quantify sources of variability in DDGS
  • Identify opportunities to enhance its value
  • Consider the nutritional implications of innovative processes to reduce fiber content
  • Quantify the contribution of the co-products to the overall GHG balance of UK crop, livestock and ethanol production 
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