The nutritional quality of soybean meal is determined by soybean variety, environmental factors and processing variables used in producing the meal. Soybean meal samples were collected from processors in Argentina, Brazil, China, India, and the United States. A soybean sample was collected from each of the countries and processed in the pilot plant facility using a common set of processing variables. The crude protein content of the commercial soybean meal samples ranged from 48.8 to 59.5% on a dry weight basis and the pilot plant processed meals varied from 47.4 to 58.5% on a dry weight basis. Lipid levels of the commercial meals ranged from 3.2 to 5.9% on a dry weight basis. The protein quality of the soybean meal samples was determined using a chick protein efficiency ratio (PER) assay. Eight-day old chicks were fed a 10% crude protein diet (as-fed-basis) containing the various soybean meals as sole source of protein. Chicks fed the U.S. meal gained faster and had a higher PER (4.1 g wt. gain/g crude protein intake) compared to the chicks fed the other source of soybean meal. The results of this study indicate that the nutrient composition and protein quality of soybeans and soybean meal will vary depending on the country of origin.
Batal, A.B., and co-workers. 2001. Variation in international soybean meal quality. Abstract presented at the Midwestern Section of ASA and the Midwest Branch of ADSA 2001 Mtg., Des Moines, IA. Abstract #160.