Carotenoid pigments, found in corn distiller’s oil, can be transferred to meat and eggs and hence can add value to the products. This was shown by a US Grains Council (USGC) research project conducted in conjunction with North Carolina State University.
More than 50% of the ethanol producing plants in the US extract oil from the co-products (DDGS) at the end of the ethanol production process to increase revenue from value added co-products. Currently, most of the extracted oil is used for biodiesel production, but a greater residual value may be recovered from the carotenoid. Carotenoids are naturally occurring pigment used to enhance egg colour and the skin colour of broilers, have added value from including in poultry rations. This is important as many poultry consumers around the world prefer a yellow-skinned chicken and a dark yellow egg yolk.
The 56-day feeding trial was performed in broilers to determine if the carotenoids in corn distiller’s oil, sometimes referred to as CDO, could be transferred to them. At the end of the study, researchers found the carotenoids in corn distiller’s oil add an additional value of $0.05 of value per kg of corn distiller’s oil. For a 100 million gallon ethanol plant, this new use could translate into an additional $500,000 in revenue annually.
Dr Peter Ferket from the university will present the results of the study at the upcoming Atlanta International Poultry Expo at the end of January. In the meantime, the Council is planning feeding trials in Mexico to demonstrate this added value to the Mexican poultry industry and outreach domestically to ensure the US ethanol industry is aware of the market opportunity.
Source: US Grains