Nutrition Notes | When Corn is Cheap: Should I Still Feed Ethanol By-Products? Facebook Twitter LinkedIn When corn is cheaper, this is a familiar question. Many producers are under the impression that if DDG or wet byproducts are higher priced than corn, they are not a good buy. Actually, they can still save money on their total feed cost by using byproducts, because they are going to use a lower inclusion balancer instead of a 40% finisher fed at 1-2 lb/head/day. If your customer insists on dropping distillers, that is his decision, I am just providing you the economic facts in this scenario. I ran some projections using corn, hay and 40-20 vs corn, hay, WDG and balancer. I looked at $3.20 corn down to $2.50/ bushel. I used modified distillers grain at a constant price of $65/ton, which is equal to about $3.40 corn. WDG was used at 20% of the diet dry matter in both cases. Below is a table showing costs for this comparison. It was run using 900-lb steers fed to 1500 lb. Obviously, purchase price will affect cost of gain and breakeven, but this gives you a general idea of the differences. Conv WDG Conv WDG Corn Price $3.20 $3.20 $2.50 $2.50 ADG 4.07 4.07 4.07 4.07 F/G 689 689 689 689 Cost of Gain $76.72 $68.47 $67.61 $61.51 Breakeven/cwt $103 $100 $99 $97 Total Feed $ $345 #297 $292 $256 As you can see, the advantage is $48 with $3.20 corn and $36 with $2.50 corn. The rest of the ingredient costs were hay at $80 and supplements at approximately $500/ton. Each situation needs to be evaluated on its own merit, but hopefully this gives you some figures to help your producers make a wise decision. NN 09-12-16 Cheap Corn Feed Ethanol By-Products 2019 Related Nutrition Notes Drought Affects Water Quality During periods of drought, concern turns immediately to forage supplies, and rightfully so – cattle need to eat. Water is one of those things that is taken for granted, however,… Read More Derecho Damaged Corn The Derecho damaged an estimated 40 million acres of farm landing, laying fields of corn bent and broken, if not completely flat. This article investigates designing and using cattle grazing… Read More Kent Performance Primer When stress happens it often impacts livestock in more than one way, such as feed intake, maintenance requirements, and even health status. Learn how Kent Performance Primer has proved successful… Read More Want to learn more from KNG research? Give us your email address to be notified when we publish new Nutrition Notes articles.