Distillers dried grains: a sustainable energy source
[Lexington, Kentucky] - Of the 300 million metric tons (mmt) of maize produced each year, the United States currently uses almost 16% to process ethanol. The production method most widely used is a form of fermentation that uses dry grinding, which creates a valuable co-product - distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS). Some 3.2mmt of DDGS are being used in the animal feed industry to create a high-energy, high-protein feed ingredient for pigs and poultry. Though the composition of DDGS can vary, it is assumed to have three times the level of nutrients than original corn.
By growing specific molds on distillers' grain in a solid state fermentation system, Alltech has been able to produce a uniquely designed supplement that enhances the digestion of grains. The uniqueness of the enzymes produced by Koji systems allows co-products like distillers grains to be utilized as an alternative raw material for animal feed. As a result of the growing demand for this sustainable new energy source, Alltech will double the size of its production facility in Serdan, Mexico, and has plans to open a new facility in Springfield, Kentucky. This state-of-the-art Koji plant will be the second such plant built by Alltech and represents the only solid state fermentation plant in North America.
On announcing the expansion, Mr. Mark Lyons, Alltech's director of international projects, said, "The plant in Serdan, Mexico, is giving the company a new technological platform in providing an alternative energy source. Five new koji products, specifically designed for distillers grain, soya hulls, peanut hulls, wheat bran and canola hulls have been perfected. Research has shown that the implications of these Koji enzymes have demonstrated that feed efficiency and weight gain are significantly improved."