May 10, 2023

Grain for animal feed

The major feed grains are corn, sorghum, barley, and oats. Grains have properties which makes them very suited for feeding of animals. They have a high content of energy yielding components. In addition, they have a very low moisture content and they can be stored for very long periods of time.

Corn, oats, barley, and milo (sorghum grain) are the most important energy-rich grains. They contain about 70 to 80 percent of TDN (total digestible nutrients) including 7 to 10 percent of digestible protein. Wheat bran, rice bran, wheat middlings, rye middlings, and rice polish are byproduct feeds from the grain milling industry.

Grains are the edible seeds of plants. Cereal grains are actually the seeds of grasses which develop as the plant matures over the growing season. During this development, the seed fills with starch and associated protein. Increasing the concentration of starch at maturity is the plant’s method of storing energy for germination and early seedling development.

Corn is the primary U.S. feed grain, accounting for more than 95 percent of total feed grain production and use.

Corn is a major component of livestock feed. Feed use, a derived demand, is closely related to the number of animals (cattle, hogs, and poultry) that are fed corn and typically accounts for about 40 percent of total domestic corn use.

The cattle feeding sector relies on cereal grains as concentrated sources of energy, particularly in finishing rations where cereals make up to 90% of the ration dry matter. This heavy reliance on cereals as an energy source is due in part to the fact that the cost per unit of dietary energy is typically less for cereal grains than for any other readily available feed source.

There are a number of different grains that are commonly fed to horses. The most common are oats, corn, and barley. Milo (sorghum) and wheat are other grains that are fed to horses as well. Grains such as oats, barley, and corn can be fed whole, though many are typically processed to increase digestibility.
Grain for animal feed

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