Sorghum has plenty of advantages for a manufacturer looking to stand out from the crowd
November 26, 2018
The European Feed Manufacturers’ Federation (FEFAC) brings together 23 national associations in Europe. We interview FEFAC’s Deputy Secretary General, Arnaud Bouxin, to discover what sorghum means to its members, the crop’s market potential and its sanitary and environmental benefits.
What is sorghum’s current situation among European manufacturers?
Today, sorghum is of relative interest to compound feed manufacturers compared to other sources of nutrients. Above all, it is a question of opportunity: if the quantities are available and supplies are regular, sorghum is of interest to manufacturers and it is then a matter of price vs. other feed materials of the same profile. But for now it remains used locally because no real trade has been established in Europe.
Why is it still a question of opportunity for sorghum?
Sorghum suffers from its image as a plant rich in tannins, which is still the quality standard for globally
traded production. But it is not the same in Europe, where tannins are no longer present or only at very low levels. A virtuous circle must therefore be created: local interest can attract the attention of other countries, sparking a snowball effect and triggering investments to optimise the use of the nutrition value of sorghum. There are no potential obstacles to the development of sorghum and manufacturers are ready to buy it. They are just seeking additional information on its advantages, availability and the regularity of supplies.
How can sorghum stand out from other sources of nutrients?
On the sanitary front, sorghum is quite resistant to fusarium or aspergillus, which is a real added value as we see occurrence of mycotoxins increasing in other cereals produced in the EU. Furthermore, it meets a societal trend because it requires fewer pesticides and has a potentially reduced environmental footprint, due to its low water consumption. Its pigment content may also be an advantage for meat colour because, unlike maize, sorghum does not cause yellowing of the flesh. Sorghum has plenty of advantages for a manufacturer looking to stand out from the crowd.
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