Factors affecting sorghum's suitability as a feed grain for pigs

Project goal

The primary objective of the project was to analyse retained PGLP sorghum samples retrospectively for a number of selected parameters that have been shown to influence energy utilisation of sorghum in pigs and poultry.

It was anticipated that these parameters could be correlated to both apparent digestible energy (ADE) in pigs and apparent metabolisable energy (AME) in broiler chickens and that their relative importance could be established.

Project summary

The performance of pigs offered sorghum-based diets usually considered poorer than pigs fed wheat. Part of this is due to the amount of protein and amino acid profiles in sorghum compared with wheat, but the main reason is thought to be related to reduced energy utilisation. This project explored the factors that affect energy utilisation in sorghum in both broiler chickens and pigs.

Value for producers:

  • Better predict and understand the value of sorghum in pig diets


  • The relative availability of energy in sorghum was lower for pigs than chickens by about 14%
  • Sorghum with high peak RVA viscosity is likely to be a poor feedgrain for pigs
  • There was no difference in ADE (apparent digertible energy) values for pigs between two white and fifteen red sorghum varieties
Research enquiries