DTN Weekly Distillers Grains Update

High-Protein Distillers Does Not Affect Beef Reproduction

While researchers have known for some time that high-protein diets can have a negative effect on dairy cow conception and reproduction, researchers are finding the same does not hold true for beef cows.

Taylor Grussing, extension cow/calf field specialist at the South Dakota State University Extension Mitchell Regional Center has done studies during her graduate work at Iowa State University examining the effect of high-protein distillers grains on the reproduction of beef cows.

The practice of removing oil from distillers grains for an additional revenue stream has become so popular that nearly 90% of all ethanol plants now sell low-oil distillers grains. Removing the oil results in a decrease in energy compared to traditional distillers, but results in a higher concentration of protein.

With distillers grains being so popular and widely available in the Midwest, there have been some questions among producers about different pregnancy results, calving difficulty or conception rates, Grussing said. Some jumped to the conclusion that the issue was somehow associated with the high-protein distillers grains.

Grussing said there is a significant amount of research showing that when high-protein feedstuffs are elevated above 20% of the diet in dairy cattle, they have a negative effect on fertility and reproduction. Grussing said that, while she did not do any specific research on dairy cattle, she used that research as a comparison.

"There isn't as much research in beef cattle, so that's where the basis of this project started -- to feed these high-protein distillers diets to beef cows and then look at the reproductive functions and see if we can determine any effects, similar to dairy cattle," she said.

Previous research has shown that when protein in the diet was above 20% or the urea/nitrogen concentration in the blood reaches 19 milligrams per deciliter or 15 mg/dL in milk, there were significant decreases in pregnancy rates in dairy cattle.

Although Grussing did not actually breed the cows she worked with, there was a meta-analysis done by Patrick Gunn Extension Cow-Calf Specialist at Iowa State University including several studies that found no negative effects on reproduction at protein levels between 10-25 m/dL with that urea/nitrogen concentration when beef cows were actually bred, as long as they were allowed one week to adapt to those diets.

Also part of Gunn's research was that the high-protein diet affected not only the cows that were fed the rations, but the heifers' offspring they gave birth to. The calves born to cows given the high-protein distillers in their rations weighed more between birth and puberty, grew faster and had better pregnancy rates.

The researchers believed that possibly the high-protein diet of the cow had a fetal programming or developmental programming effect on skeletal growth and helped the female calves grow up faster. The high protein also possibly helped females conceive earlier, as the calves from the high-protein supplemented cows had better pregnancy rates in their first breeding season.

"I think it is very interesting to see how that developmental programming might not necessary effect the cows you're feed the high-protein distillers to, but what the long-lasting effects are down the road with the progeny you are testing," Grussing said. "That could have a positive impact on your cow herd if you are retaining those females."


Grussing said researchers still don't know exactly what effect acute changes in bumping up protein in rations would have on beef cattle.

She said the acclimation period depends on how big of a protein bump a producer is planning.

Increasing rations from zero to 20% would necessitate a stair-step method to gradually adapt the cows to the higher levels. But since most cow diets would involve a smaller increase, it would depend on what kind of ration the cows have been on previously.

"Distillers has less starch so we don't have to worry as much about acidosis compared to corn," she said. "But if they haven't been on any distillers or corn before, maybe take two steps to get there."


Currently, there tends to be fewer pastures available and corn residue/distillers diets are more common, especially at this time of year when producers are trying to save pastures and let them green up. Mixing high-quality protein distillers with low-quality feedstuffs such as corn residue makes it a very economical ration, especially this time of year when cows approach peak lactation after calving.

Grussing said the high-protein distillers is likely beneficial to cows, especially during lactation when they might be under some nutrient stress.

Another factor to consider is that some in the industry believe cattle in the Midwest may be a little heavier than the national average of about 1,200 pounds. So, potentially having that high-protein distillers might be more beneficial to larger cows that have higher protein requirements.


Grussing recommended that producers test every load of distillers in order to use the protein as efficiently as possible.

"The high-protein distillers that are now commonly available obviously have less energy, so making sure to balance rations will ensure that protein and energy requirements are being met. That is still the optimal way to get cows to perform most efficiently," she said.

She added," Excess protein doesn't appear to negatively affect reproduction, and so concerns about giving too much protein shouldn't be a worry for beef producers today as long as there is a balanced, nutrient management plan in place. Always visit with a team of experts including extension specialists, nutritionists and herd health veterinarian to determine the best nutritional management for your herd".

Cheryl Anderson can be reached at cheryl.anderson@dtn.com

Follow Cheryl Anderson on Twitter @CherylADTN



New Ethanol Production Technology Could Use DDG for Biofuels

Researcher Blake Simmons believes his new non-toxic ethanol technology could reduce ethanol production to just one step, as well as using the process to convert distillers dried grains into biofuels, according to an article by Illinois Farmer Today (http://bit.ly/…).

Simmons has been working for nine years, to develop "high-gravity" one-pot production, funded by the U.S. BioEnergy Institute in California.

The method, refined in the past 18 months, uses one process that pre-treats, hydrolizes and ferments biomass without any separation of byproducts. The new technology involves less time and water and can also use other materials such as crop residue or grasses.

Simmons said that the new process uses powerful solvents, ionic liquids, which dissolve biomass into sugars for the production of biofuels. These ionic liquids increase biomass digestibility, exceeding current production distillation levels for ethanol production.

The new technology is envisioned as a component to be added to current ethanol production facilities while continuing traditional ethanol production methods, Simmons said. He expects the process to be available on a commercial scale within five to six years.

Simmons said his research on the project includes using the new process to convert DDG to biofuel, thereby using all the carbon found in plant material and increasing efficiency.



COMPANY STATE 5/5/2016 4/29/2016 CHANGE
Bartlett and Company, Kansas City, MO (816-753-6300)
Missouri Dry $135 $135 $0
Modified $65 $65 $0
CHS, Minneapolis, MN (800-769-1066)
Illinois Dry $140 $135 $5
Indiana Dry $135 $132 $3
Iowa Dry $125 $125 $0
Michigan Dry $135 $132 $3
Minnesota Dry $115 $115 $0
North Dakota Dry $120 $115 $5
New York Dry $145 $135 $10
South Dakota Dry $115 $115 $0
MGP Ingredients, Atchison, KS (800-255-0302 Ext. 5253)
Kansas Dry $128 $128 $0
POET Nutrition, Sioux Falls, SD (888-327-8799)
Indiana Dry $130 $122 $8
Iowa Dry $123 $120 $3
Michigan Dry $120 $115 $5
Minnesota Dry $120 $115 $5
Missouri Dry $138 $135 $3
Ohio Dry $130 $128 $2
South Dakota Dry $118 $115 $3
United BioEnergy, Wichita, KS (316-616-3521)
Kansas Dry $127 $130 -$3
Wet $50 $50 $0
Illinois Dry $140 $140 $0
Nebraska Dry $127 $130 -$3
Wet $50 $50 $0
U.S. Commodities, Minneapolis, MN (888-293-1640)
Illinois Dry $135 $135 $0
Indiana Dry $130 $130 $0
Iowa Dry $120 $120 $0
Michigan Dry $125 $130 -$5
Minnesota Dry $115 $115 $0
Nebraska Dry $125 $125 $0
New York Dry $140 $140 $0
North Dakota Dry $125 $130 -$5
Ohio Dry $130 $135 -$5
South Dakota Dry $120 $115 $5
Wisconsin Dry $128 $128 $0
Valero Energy Corp., San Antonio, TX (402-727-5300)
Indiana Dry $130 $125 $5
Iowa Dry $120 $115 $5
Minnesota Dry $115 $115 $0
Nebraska Dry $130 $125 $5
Ohio Dry $135 $130 $5
South Dakota Dry $115 $110 $5
Western Milling, Goshen, California (559-302-1074)
California Dry $192 $185 $7
*Prices listed per ton.
Weekly Average $126 $125 $1
The weekly average prices above reflect only those companies DTN
collects spot prices from. States include: Missouri, Iowa, Nebraska,
Kansas, Illinois, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Michigan,
Wisconsin and Indiana. Prices for Pennsylvania, New York and
California are not included in the averages.

*The spot prices gathered by DTN are only intended to reflect general market trends and may vary. Please contact individual plant or merchandiser for exact prices.

If you would be willing to take a weekly phone call and have your distiller grains spot prices listed in this feature, please contact Cheryl Anderson at (308) 224-1527 or (800) 369-7875, or e-mail cheryl.anderson@dtn.com.


Settlement Price: Quote Date Bushel Short Ton
Corn 5/5/2016 $3.7175 $132.77
Soybean Meal 5/5/2016 $335.00
DDG Weekly Average Spot Price $126.00
DDG Value Relative to: 5/6 4/92/2016 4/22
Corn 94.90% 88.97% 92.64%
Soybean Meal 37.61% 37.34% 39.46%
Cost Per Unit of Protein:
DDG $5.04 $4.96 $4.92
Soybean Meal $7.05 $6.99 $6.56
Corn and soybean prices taken from DTN Market Quotes. DDG
price represents the average spot price from Midwest
companies collected on Thursday afternoons. Soybean meal
cost per unit of protein is cost per ton divided by 47.5.
DDG cost per unit of protein is cost per ton divided by 25.




Dried Modified Wet
Iowa 110.00-128.00 50.00-60.00 32.00-40.00
Minnesota 109.00-115.00 55.00 34.00-40.00
Nebraska 115.00-141.00 58.00-70.00 45.00-50.00
South Dakota 105.00-121.50 60.00-68.00 36.00-40.00
Wisconsin 118.00-125.00 51.00-60.00 NQ
Eastern Corn Belt 115.00-140.00 50.00-60.00 32.00-40.00
Kansas 125.00-148.00 NQ 47.00-54.00
Northern Missouri 126.00-135.00 63.00 40.00-42.00
CIF NOLA 145.00-166.00
Pacific Northwest 177.00-185.00
California 177.00-185.00
Texas Border (metric ton) 190.00-205.00
Lethbridge AB 152.00
Chicago 132.00-150.00

Dried Distillers Grain: 10% Moisture

Modified Wet Distillers: 50-55% Moisture

Wet Distillers Grains: 65-70% Moisture


Distillers Dry Grains

  Rail to California Points           178.00-180.00    unch
  FOB Truck to California Points      188.00-195.00    unch-up 7.00


Offers for Distillers Dried Grains delivered by rail to feed mills in the Pacific Northwest were 1.00 to 5.00 higher from 179.00-190.00. Offers for distillers dried grains trans-loaded onto trucks and delivered to Willamette Valley dairies were also 1.00 to 5.00 higher from


*All prices quoted per ton unless otherwise noted.



Dry and Wet Mill, Co-products and Products Produced - United States

February 2016 - March 2016

May 2, 2016


Dry mill co-product production of distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS) was 1.92 million tons during March 2016, up 7 percent from February 2016 and up 8 percent from March 2015. Distillers wet grains (DWG) 65 percent or more moisture was 1.32 million tons in March 2016, up 6 percent from February 2016 but down 6 percent from March 2015.

Wet mill corn gluten feed production was 342.7 thousand tons during March 2016, up 10 percent from February 2016 and up 3 percent from March 2015. Wet corn gluten feed 40 to 60 percent moisture was 290.6 thousand tons in March 2016, up 5 percent from February 2016 but down 6 percent from March 2015.

Co-products and Products Mar 2015 Feb 2016 Mar 2016
Dry Mill tons
Condensed distillers solubles (CDS-syrup) 163,796 122,291 137,541
Corn oil 106,270 123,806 125,483
Distillers dried grains (DDG) 438,728 367,436 384,739
Distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS) 1,781,563 1,795,472 1,919,507
Modified distillers wet grains (DWG) <65% moisture 1,399,125 1,247,751 1,317,118
Modified distillers wet grains (DWG) 40-64% moisture 494,835 401,370 456,256
Wet Mill
Corn germ meal 57,439 65,123 68,140
Corn gluten feed 331,547 312,012 342,668
Corn gluten meal 93,078 83,643 91,945
Corn oil 42,684 46,490 51,415
Wet corn gluten feed 40-60% moisture 308,444 277,434 290,565



National Organizations:

Distillers Grains Technology Council (www.distillersgrains.org)

Renewable Fuels Association (www.ethanolrfa.org)

U.S. Grains Council (www.grains.org)

National Corn Growers Association (www.ngfa.org)

American Feed Industry Association (www.afia.org)


National Grains and Feed Association (www.ngfa.org)

Association of American Feed Control Officials (www.aafco.org)

USDA Animal Feed Safety System (http://1.usa.gov/…)

USDA Food Safety Modernization Act (http://1.usa.gov/…)

University Websites:

Corn Processing Coproducts Manual, Nebraska Corn Board and Nebraska Corn Board and the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources Agricultural Research Division Cooperative Extension Division (http://bit.ly/…)

University of Minnesota Biofuels Coproducts in Animal Feed (www.biofuelscoproducts.umn.edu)



*Distillers Grains Technology Council Inc.'s 20th Annual Distillers Grains Symposium

The Distillers Grains Technology Council will hold its 20th Annual Distillers Grains Symposium on May 18-19, 2016, at the Hyatt Regency at The Arch in St. Louis, Missouri. For information, contact the DGTC office at (515) 294-4019 or (800) 759-3448, or check the DGTC website (http://www.distillersgrains.org).

(If you are sponsoring or know of any event, conference or workshop on distillers grains, and would like to list it in the DTN Weekly Distillers Grains Update, please contact Cheryl Anderson (see contact info below).


We welcome any comments/suggestions for this feature. Please let us know what information is valuable to you that we could include in the Distillers Grains Weekly Update. Please feel free to contact Cheryl Anderson at (402) 364-2183, or e-mail cheryl.anderson@dtn.com.