Nutritional value of soybean meal varies among sources from different countries

July 24, 2017, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Credit: CC0 Public Domain

Research from the University of Illinois is helping swine producers know what they're getting when they buy soybean meal from different countries. Genetic differences among varieties of soybeans, as well as differences in growing conditions and processing, may affect the nutritional value of soybean meal produced in different places.

The largest producers of soybean meal in the world are China, Argentina, Brazil, the United States, and India. In many swine-producing countries around the world, soybean meal is imported from one of these five countries and buyers can choose among them. Until now, however, there has been very limited data to compare the compositional and nutritional value to pigs of soybean meal produced in different countries.

Hans H. Stein, professor of nutrition in the Department of Animal Sciences at U of I, conducted an experiment to compare the nutritional composition and amino acid digestibility by pigs using soybean meal produced in the five major soybean-producing countries.

Stein and Ph. D. student Vanessa Lagos collected five sources of soybean meal each from China, Argentina, Brazil, and the United States, and four sources from India. They then fed diets containing the 24 soybean meal sources to growing barrows.

"Our data indicate that the amount of digestible protein and amino acids was greater in soybean meal from the United States, India, and Brazil than in soybean meal from Argentina or China," Stein reports.

Soybean meal from Brazil and India had the greatest concentration of crude protein and amino acids, he says. However, the standardized ileal digestibility of crude protein and amino acids was greatest in soybean meal from the United States.

Stein says that in the global economy, feed ingredients may be sourced from a number of different sources.

"It's important to know that the of soybean meal produced in different countries may be different, and to take those differences into account when making decisions about purchasing and diet formulations. Results of this experiment indicating that the concentration of digestible is less in soybean meal sourced from Argentina or China than in soybean meal from the United States gives international buyers increased information to base purchasing decisions on."

U.S. Soybean Export Council (USSEC) chairman Jim Miller says the results of this study echo USSEC's strategy of building a preference for U.S. soy around the world. "We have boots on the ground in six global regions to educate our customers on the intrinsic and extrinsic advantages of U.S. soy using the latest research and information," he explains. "U.S farmers have always believed that our product is very consistent, and Dr. Stein's study proves that meal from the U.S. has less variability in both composition and digestibility."

The United States Soybean Export Council and the Indiana Soybean Alliance provided funding for the study.

The paper, "Chemical composition and amino acid digestibility of produced in the United States, China, Argentina, Brazil, or India," is published in the Journal of Animal Science.

Explore further: Soybean meal produced in US has greater energy values when fed to pigs than previously estimated

More information: L. V. Lagos et al, Chemical composition and amino acid digestibility of soybean meal produced in the United States, China, Argentina, Brazil, or India, Journal of Animal Science (2017). DOI: 10.2527/jas.2017.1440

Related Stories

Replacing soybean meal in pig diets

February 28, 2013

Canola, cottonseed, and sunflower products can replace soybean meal in diets fed to pigs, but they contain less protein and energy. To determine if it makes economic sense to use them, producers need to know the concentrations ...

Recommended for you

Bumblebees confused by iridescent colors

May 25, 2018

Iridescence is a form of structural colour which uses regular repeating nanostructures to reflect light at slightly different angles, causing a colour-change effect.

Dragonfly enzymes point to larger evolutionary dynamics

May 24, 2018

Although evolution has left dragonflies virtually unchanged for roughly 300 million years, new research by a UTM biologist reveals that understanding small physiological activities in these insects could reveal a deeper understanding ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.