ATLANTA, GEORGIA, U.S. — Two new reports outlining the economic impact of the U.S. feed industry and providing a breakdown of the top feed ingredients will be vital tools for the industry, said American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) leaders during the International Production & Processing Expo (IPPE) in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.

The reports, commissioned by the AFIA and the Institute for Feed Education and Research (IFEEDER), are the first of their kinds for the feed industry. Results of the year-long studies were released during the IPPE event.

Richards Sellers senior vice-president of public policy and education for the AFIA
Richard Sellers, senior vice-president of public policy and education for the AFIA

“It’s a powerful tool,” said Richard Sellers, senior vice-president of public policy and education for the AFIA, in an interview with World Grain. “It’s remarkable that we have species and state and ingredient data.”

The AFIA will use the reports throughout 2018 in discussions with policymakers, allied groups and media. Information is also available to AFIA members, and can be broken down by state and congressional district.

“Our members can go online when they’re going to visit their congressman and give them paperwork on the value and impact of the feed industry,” Sellers said.

Overall, the animal food manufacturing industry contributed $297.1 billion in total U.S. sales in 2016, including $102 billion in value-added contributions and more than $22.5 billion in local, state and national taxes, according to the economic contribution report.

Five states — Missouri, California, Texas, Pennsylvania and Iowa — contributed a combined $105.2 billion in total sales and $8.3 billion in local, state and national taxes.

The report listed several factors that play a role in the animal food industry’s ongoing economic output and said the odds are good the industry will adapt and grow stronger.

chicken feed
The otherreporton feed ingredients and feed demand showed that 236.3 million tons of animal food were fed to nine animal species. Sellers said the AFIA had in the past estimated that total at 187 million tons.

It used data from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service on the number of animals processed for food and would estimate a general diet per animal species.

Using this method, it could be difficult to determine how much beef and dairy cattle actually ate, likely accounting for the AFIA’s lower number, Sellers said.

But with these studies, completed by Decision Innovation Solutions (DIS), an economic research and analysis firm, the best economic technology available was used, he said.

DIS worked with 25 industry and university experts to determine the specific diets fed to animals at various stages of their lives and adjusted them for regional dietary differences.

According to the report, the top three feed consumers are beef cattle (74.7 million tons), broilers (56.3 million tons) and hogs (46.3 million tons).

Top ingredients include corn (118.8 million tons); soybean meal (30.1 million tons); DDGs (29.8 million tons); wheat products (4 million tons); and animal proteins (1.3 million tons).