May 12, 2009

Committee helps focus, speed research into distillers grains

As a way to increase the number of corn coproduct research studies it supports and to ensure that research will more quickly benefit the state’s cattle industry, the Nebraska Corn Board has created a beef cattle advisory committee.

The committee reviews the latest research results -- and then helps determine which direction the next set of research projects should take. This reduces the time in between research projects and more quickly increases the knowledge base of feeding corn coproducts like distillers grains to cattle.

In a news release, Nebraska Corn Board member Dennis Gengenbach said by operating its corn coproduct and cattle research in such a way it will double the amount of research. Gengenbach is a corn and cattle farmer from Smithfield who heads up the Corn Board’s research committee.

Dr. Galen Erickson, a beef feedlot specialist with the University of Nebraska, said in the past, research results would be presented and feedback provided. University researchers would then need to develop a funding request for the next research project, which the Corn Board would consider in its next fiscal year budget.

That took a lot of time.

To keep the committee focused on how best to meet the demands of cattle producers, it contains a mix of members, including:
  • Four university researchers
  • One feedlot cattle producer
  • One cow-calf producer
  • One feedlot nutritionist
  • One forage nutritionist
  • One member of the Nebraska Beef Council
  • Two members of the Nebraska Corn Board
To support the committee and research efforts, the Nebraska Corn Board said it increased the amount of money it commits to corn coproduct and cattle research each year.

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