Sorghum in One Word


Dr. Reinhard Puntigam, researcher with the Institute for Animal Nutrition and Feed Management at the Bavarian State Research Centre for Agriculture in Grub, Germany, believes sorghum to be a relevant crop, above all.

A Resilient Cereal…

“Less demanding agriculturally speaking, sorghum is – botanically speaking – more resistant to drought compared to other cereals. That allows for a higher consistency of its yields when water is scarce.”

…Adapted for Feed Use

“As a low-tannin plant, sorghum can be included in the feeds of swine and poultry. In well-balanced swine rations, the partial or total replacement of corn with ground sorghum does not affect the animals’ growth performance or the carcass scores at the slaughterhouse. In fact, scientific studies indicate that replacing maize with sorghum has a positive effect on fatty acid models and oxidative stability.

By storing the high-moisture grains (whether whole or ground), one can eliminate the drying stage and thus reduce the costs of feed preparation and the risk of degradation of thermolabile nutrients. Silo storage – which implies an early harvest – has in fact proven a positive impact upon mycotoxin concentration, which in turn could have positive consequences for the feed quality and the animals’ performance.”

…and which Opens New Perspectives for Pest Control

“Sorghum could also contribute to rotation diversification – which in turn would mean lower pest pressure. This is particularly important for the control of Chrysomela, which feeds on the corn roots. In the United States, the costs related to the management of this parasite generate economic losses of over $1 billion/year.”

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