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Feeding small cereal grains to pigs

In the absence of corn, cereal grains such as wheat and barley can be used very successfully in swine diets. The purpose of this fact sheet is to provide guidance on feeding small cereal grains such as wheat, barley, oats, rye and triticale to pigs.

Many countries around the world, as well as other parts of Canada, routinely use wheat and/or barley as the main energy sources for swine rations. Other small grains such as oats, rye and triticale can also be incorporated, although typically at lower inclusion levels.

Just like corn, growing and harvesting conditions can impact the nutritional value of cereal grains. Small grains are similar to corn in terms of their nutritional value; however, there are also some important differences to note. Most importantly, small grains are typically higher in crude protein and lysine compared to corn. This means you may need less soybean meal in your diets to compensate. Small grains also have higher digestible phosphorus (providing economic and environmental benefits) but tend to be lower in energy.

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