Two experiments were conducted to determine the effects of including distiller's dried grains with solubles in nursery diets on growth performance, and to establish maximum inclusion rates for corn distiller's dried grains with solubles originating from modern, "new-generation" ethanol plants (built since 1990). Ninety-six crossbred pigs (BW = 6.18 ± 0.14 kg) were blocked by gender and ancestry, and pigs within each block were randomly assigned to one of six dietary treatments (four pigs/pen, four pens/dietary treatment) in each of two growth performance experiments. Dietary treatments provided 0, 5, 10, 15, 20, or 25% distiller's dried grains with solubles during Phases 2 and 3 of a three-phase nursery feeding program for early-weaned pigs. Pigs in Exp. 1 were slightly older (19.0 vs. 16.9 d of age) and heavier (7.10 vs. 5.26 kg) at the beginning of the experiment compared to pigs in Exp. 2. All pigs in both experiments were provided a commercial pelleted Phase 1 diet for the first 4 d after weaning and were then switched to their respective experimental Phase 2 diets, which were fed for 14 d, followed by their respective Phase 3 experimental diets, which were fed for a subsequent 21-d feeding period. Experimental diets were formulated to contain equivalent apparent ileal digestible lysine (1.35 and 1.15%), apparent ileal digestible methionine + cystine (0.80 and 0.65%), ME (3,340 and 3,390 kcal/kg), calcium (0.95 and 0.80%), and total phosphorus (0.80 and 0.70%) within Phases 2 and 3, respectively. Overall growth rate, ending body weight, and feed conversion were similar among pigs regardless of dietary distiller's dried grains with solubles level for both experiments. In Exp. 1, feed intake was not affected by dietary treatment (P > 0.10). In Exp. 2, however, increasing the level of distiller's dried grains with solubles linearly decreased feed intake (P < 0.02) during Phase 2 and tended to decrease voluntary feed intake (P < 0.09) over the length of the experiment. These results suggest that the corn distiller's dried grains with solubles used in this study can be included in Phase 3 diets for nursery pigs at dietary levels of up to 25% without negatively affecting growth performance after a 2-wk acclimation period. Including high levels of corn distiller's dried grains with solubles in diets for pigs weighing less than 7 kg in BW, however, may negatively influence feed intake and growth.
- Distiller's Dried Grains with Solubles