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Recycling liquor leftovers as animal feed produces happier pigs and tastier pork

Christian Fernsby |
Tastier pork comes from pigs that eat the barley left over after making the Japanese liquor shochu.

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Topics: PIG    PORK   

A team of professional brewers and academic farmers state that nutrients in the leftover fermented barley may reduce the animals' stress, resulting in better tasting sirloin and fillets.

"Kyushu, in Western Japan is well known historically for making shochu and for its many pig farms.

"We hope collaborative research projects like ours can directly benefit the local community and global environment," said Yasuhisa Ano, the first author of the research paper published in Food Chemistry.

Ano is affiliated with the Kirin Central Research Institute at Kirin Holdings Co., Ltd.

Currently, the mash of leftovers that remains after distilling out the alcohol is considered industrial waste and is often disposed of in ways that create more climate changing carbon dioxide.

Feeding distillation leftovers to farm animals can improve the animals' quality of life, lower farmers' and brewers' costs, appeal to discerning foodies, and benefit the environment by reducing food waste.

Japanese shochu can be made from barley, potatoes, rice or other starches first decomposed with mold, then fermented with yeast, and finally distilled to an alcohol content usually greater than 20 percent.

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