Animal Science Department


First Advisor

Chris R. Calkins

Date of this Version



A THESIS Presented to the Faculty of
 The Graduate College at the University of Nebraska In Partial Fulfillment of Requirements
 For the Degree of Master of Science, Major: Animal Science, Under the Supervision of Professor Chris R. Calkins. Lincoln, Nebraska: December, 2018.

Copyright (c) 2018 Kellen B. Hart


The objective of this study was to evaluate the effects of feeding high protein corn distillers grains on fresh beef quality. Steers (n=300) were fed one of five diets (6 pens with 10 head/pen): a corn control, 40% high protein dry distillers grains plus solubles (HP-DDGS), 40% dry distillers grains plus solubles (DDGS), 40% wet distillers grains plus solubles (WDGS), or 40% bran plus solubles (Bran). Eighteen Choice carcasses (3 head/pen) were randomly selected within each treatment (n=88). Strip loins were aged for 2, 9, or 23 d, after which steaks were placed under retail display conditions for 0, 4, or 7 d. Dietary treatment had no effect on tenderness within each aging period (P > 0.05). After 7 d of retail display, following all aging periods, steaks from cattle fed HP-DDGS had the greatest discoloration except for DDGS and Bran after 23 d (P < 0.05). The steaks from cattle fed HP-DDGS also had lower (P < 0.05) redness (a*) values than all other treatments following 7 d of retail display.After 7 d of retail display, steaks from cattle fed HP-DDGS had significantly greater lipid oxidation than all other treatments except WDGS (P < 0.01). There was a trend (P = 0.07) that steaks from cattle fed HP-DDGS had higher levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids and C18:2. These results suggest that feeding high protein distillers grains has no detriment on tenderness, but may alter the lipid profile of the muscle resulting in decreased color stability, increased lipid oxidation and decreased shelf life.

Advisor: Chris R. Calkins