The nutritional value of oil seed rape in pig and poultry diets is being re-examined by a research consortium in the U.K. The grouping of Scotland's Rural College, the University of Nottingham and the National Institute of Agricultural Botany, will provide the U.K. feed industry with updated information and instill greater confidence about using oil seed rape in pig and poultry feed.

It will also be used to inform oil seed rape breeders, growers, home-mixers and feed manufacturers about the opportunities offered by this protein source and so reduce reliance on imported soya bean meal.

Dr. Jos Houdijk, a researcher with Scotland's Rural College, commented: "The main rational is that information on U.K. nutritional values and maximum inclusion rates for oil seed rape meal in pig and poultry diets is probably out of date. Overseas, they have been including higher levels of oil seed rape for young pigs without any detrimental impact on their growth performance."

The project will run until March 2016 and has received a GBP352,000 (US$585,586) grant from levy body the Home Grown Cereals Authority. The consortium will work with French-based research facility CREOL.