Small-Scale Biodiesel Can Benefit Cattle Ranches

Report shows oilseeds could feed cattle and fuel trucks.

Published on: Mar 26, 2008

Dr. Greg Lardy, a professor of animal science at North Dakota State University, has released a report that shows use of oilseed meal byproducts in beef cattle operations would be relatively easy. The study, Biodiesel Benefits for Cattle Producers: Feeding Byproducts of Biodiesel Production, was prepared for the Western Organization of Resource Councils and reviewed data regarding the nutritional value of biodiesel byproducts as feedstuffs for cattle.

"Oilseed meals can be used as a feedstuff in a wide variety of beef cattle nutrition applications,” Lardy says. "They are best suited for use as protein supplements in wintering diets for beef cows or in growing and finishing diets for beef calves."

Montana rancher Jeanne Charter says farm or community-scale biodiesel operations could provide good nutritional supplements to ranchers during fall and winter when grass is dormant, and is a great opportunity for cooperation between ranchers and local growers.

"This kind of technology brings farmers and ranchers together," says Gene Wirtz of the Dakota Resource Council. "Farmers can grow it. Ranchers can feed it. They can jointly manufacture, process, and use the fuels."

To view the Biodiesel Benefits report, click HERE.