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Should You Supply Dietary Energy as Oil or Carbohydrates?

Posted on: October 16, 2014 Author:

carb vs fats


The importance of dietary energy in formulating cost-effective, high-performing diets is a topic I have covered in the past.  Nutritionists usually have some ingredient options in order to get the most performance, with economy in mind, out of production animals.  The overall goal is always the same – supply just enough total calories in the diet to maximize some response (growth, production of meat, milk, eggs, etc.), but not more, in order to maximize efficiency.

Energy is typically supplied as carbohydrates – usually starch from cereal grains, like corn – and as fats and oils, such as vegetable oil (like soybean oil).  The economics of the ingredient choices, and that fact that fats and oils have, on average, 2.25 times the energy of carbohydrates, dictate what ultimately comprises a complete diet.

On the surface, supplying the desired level of calories in a complete diet is all that matters.  Where the calories come from – carbohydrates vs. fats – is often considered irrelevant.  However, the findings of a recent study show that this is not so simple.  Interestingly, the authors downplay their own findings, but as I outline here, I don’t necessarily agree.

The authors located a single, homogenous source of corn, and ground it to 4 different particle sizes.  They then determined that, as particle size decreased (became finer), metabolizable energy for swine increased.  Simply put, the pigs were able to extract a little more energy (121 kilocalories/kg for the particle sizes used in this study) from the corn as it was more finely ground.  This finding was expected.

The authors then formulated commercial diets with equal total energy using the corn with different particle sizes, and adding soybean oil to the diets with larger corn particle sizes to maintain the same energy content.  Since the larger-particle-sized corn diets were determined to have less metabolizable energy, the soy oil made up the difference.  So, we have a situation here where the total dietary energy supplied to the pigs was equal, but the calories came from different amounts of carbohydrates and fats (soy oil, in this case).  So, how did the pigs perform?

graph 1

I only show statistically significant data here, but others followed this trend – increasing the energy from soy oil reduced average daily feed intake in the pigs.  This could be alarming except when you look at the feed efficiency (pig weight gain relative to feed intake) data.

graph 2

Feed efficiency was significantly enhanced with the inclusion of more energy as soy oil.  Remember, conventional wisdom says that that you simply need to supply adequate calories.

What is demonstrated here is why it’s so important to evaluate animal data, and not only information from the lab (which is also important).  Fats and oils cause effects in the intestine that enhance nutrient digestibility, even as the flows of nutrients through the intestine are fairly constant, and even with wide variations in dietary energy level and consumption (as I showed years ago; see here and here for data and discussion).  So, energy supplied as soy oil has different, beneficial effects when compared to energy supplied as starch (mainly) in finely-ground corn.

Practically speaking, ExPress® soy meal, produced with high-shear extruders and mechanical oil presses from Insta-Pro International, has more soy oil remaining in the meal versus solvent-extracted, commodity soybean meal.  As a result, diets formulated to contain ExPress® soy meal, in place of solvent-extracted soybean meal, will contain more soy oil.  This is part of the reason why ExPress® soy meal has been repeatedly shown to be superior to commodity soybean meal (see here, here, and here).

Compromising Solutions

Posted on: October 9, 2014 Author:

Investment - small

Adding value has been the major driver for Insta-Pro business since the company was founded in late 1960′s.  Farmers around do this by growing their own crops and conducting on the farm processing to feed directly to animals; this allows them to capture additional profits by cutting out the middle men.

In this blog I am going to write about how Insta-Pro helps farmers and businesses add value to local crops and save money.  Extrusion equipment operates under high pressure and high temperatures and it is critical to maintain certain parameters to ensure stable quality of the final product. mode. Insta-Pro allows its clients to save money by offering quality machinery, durable wear components and a high quality end product.

Our expertise is based on 45 years of experience in the extrusion business along with heavy R&D work and involvement in university studies. Our team focuses on educating prospective clients about the advantages of extrusion technology through personal interaction during workshops, trade shows and one on one visits. It is not uncommon for prospects to shop around; and before too long they find out that there are other extruders in the market with a more attractive price tag.  But what they discover is it’s hard to control temperatures causing the product quality to decrease.  As a result, animals do not perform well when this product is consumed and the varied temperatures cause equipment to wear out too fast.  I would like to share with you a real life example of how we help clients when they find themselves in situations like these.

One of our clients in Russia (ZAO Tubinsk) recently purchased an extrusion line from us for processing canola and barley mix.  Prior to purchasing our machine, that they used a copy of Insta-Pro extruder purchased for 35% less than the price of Insta-Pro equipment. After months of struggle, frustrations and high cost of wear components; they decided to replace this extruder with Insta-Pro equipment.

We have two technicians on staff in our office in Stavropol, Russia who do start ups and train our clients’ technical personnel, Yuri Roslyakov has been with the company for over 18 years and Arthur Gavrishev who has recently been hired due to growth of our business in the market place.

Here is what Yuri discovered about the competitors extruder from the operator:

  • It is very hard to start and stop.  In order to clean the barrel, the extruder operator pours water through the extruder.  It’s hard and messy.
  • It can take up to an hour to get the temperature up to the maximum available temperature of 110 C, causing the product to be undercooked
  • If you increase feed intake there is huge vibration. The extruder barrel wobbles and it becomes scary.
  • When material is under processed, the final product gets very sticky and operators have to put sand on the belt conveyor in order to prevent the product from slipping. The operator will then clean the belt several times per shift due this problem.
  • Parts wear too fast. Need to replace parts every two weeks. Sometimes sooner.

The owner of ZAO Tubinsk made the decision to purchase Insta-Pro equipment. It was not an easy decision since they already had one competitors extruder and there was some skepticism whether an imported extruder would be any different. But, since their neighbor was already doing this successfully on Insta-Pro machinery Tubinsk finally decided to buy from us.  According to extruder operator Insta-Pro machinery runs much smoother, it’s very easy to operate and most importantly the quality of the end product is very high and consistent.

Insta-Pro has offices in different parts of the world and we have come across similar situations in various countries. Each one of our sales directors could give numerous examples how people learn by their mistakes.

One can always understand the desire to save money on capital investment by buying cheaper equipment. Often times customers think that since extrusion equipment is pretty simple (and looks like Insta-Pro) they can save money on buying something locally. But looks are deceptive. It’s the many years of research, development and quality that makes Insta-Pro a great value.