Environmental Footprint, Cost, and Nutrient Database of the US Animal Feed Ingredients

Poster presentation BurekWhy Look at Feed Ingredients and Environmental Footprint?

The US Pig Production Environmental Calculator (PPEC) was built upon cradle-to-farm-gate life-cycle assessment (LCA) of pork production combined with the US National Resource Council (NRC 2012) swine nutrient requirements models (NRC 2012), farm operation inputs, and animal feed database. The purpose of the US Animal Feed Database is to compile environmental, economic, and nutrient content of animal feed ingredients in a single location and integrate it into a PPEC economic model of swine operations. (Click on image at right to view a handout of the poster).

What did we do?

We collected data from different sources including NRC (2012) feed nutrient characteristics, Feedstuffs (2014) for feed prices, US agricultural and product LCA models built in SimaPro 7.3.3 (PRé Consultants 2011) and LCA databases (Swiss Centre for Life Cycle Inventories 2010; EarthShift 2011; Blonk Consultants 2014) for environmental footprints. Table 1 shows a list of top US pig feed ingredients.

What have we learned?

list in us databaseFeed ingredients with highest costs are additives (e.g. paylean) and amino acids. Milk by-products have the largest climate change impact, water and land use.

Future Plans

The information from this database will be used as a starting point for identifying potential mitigation options in pig diet formulation. The database will be updated as new information becomes available.


Jasmina Burek, Research Associate, University of Arkansas jburek@uark.edu

Greg Thoma, Jennie Popp, Charles Maxwell, Rick Ulrich

Additional information

National Pork Board (2015) Carbon Footprint of Pork Production Calculator – Pork Checkoff.
Pesti G, Thomson E, Bakalli R, et al. (2004) Windows User-Friendly Feed Formulation (WUFFF DA) Version1.02.
PRé Consultants (2014) SimaPro 8.3. 4555022.

Pig Production Environmental Calculator
Life-Cycle Assessment Modeling for the Pork Industry


This research is part of the program “Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation in Agriculture,” and is supported by Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Competitive Grant no. 2011-68002-30208 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.

The authors are solely responsible for the content of these proceedings. The technical information does not necessarily reflect the official position of the sponsoring agencies or institutions represented by planning committee members, and inclusion and distribution herein does not constitute an endorsement of views expressed by the same. Printed materials included herein are not refereed publications. Citations should appear as follows. EXAMPLE: Authors. 2015. Title of presentation. Waste to Worth: Spreading Science and Solutions. Seattle, WA. March 31-April 3, 2015. URL of this page. Accessed on: today’s date.