Interpretive Summary: Effects of high-amylase corn on performance and carcass quality of finishing beef heifers
By Anne Zinn
A recent paper published in the Journal of Animal Science outlined two experiments designed to examine processing characteristics of Enogen Feed Corn, in vitro digestion, and effects on feedlot performance, carcass characteristics, and liver abscess incidence and severity. Originally developed for use in fuel ethanol production, Enogen Feed Corn is genetically modified to express high concentrations of α-amylase in the corn kernel. Corn has been well established as the principal ingredient fed to finishing cattle in the United States, but there is limited literature available on finishing cattle fed Enogen Feed Corn; in the case of steam-flaking Enogen Feed Corn, the current study is the first such research to be performed.
Results outlined in the paper demonstrate that feeding high-amylase corn could improve microbial digestion, average daily gain, feed efficiency, hot carcass weight, and liver abscess mitigation. High-amylase corn could also be used advantageously by producers to reduce production costs associated with steam flakin, such as reduced steam use, reduced grain processing, and increased mill throughput. While more research is required, the results of the current study are promising.
The full experiment design and results, as well as the discussion, can be found on the Journal of Animal Science website.