What is the corn/soybean feed conversion ratio for broiler-type chickens or pork?

Asked July 31, 2014, 10:25 AM EDT

How many pounds of corn/soybeans does it take to produce a pound of chicken meat?

I haven't been able to locate the answer on this web site, but the question is similar to what you've already answered for beef under this topic:

On average, how many pounds of corn make one pound of beef? Assuming an all-grain diet from backgrounding through to 1,250-pound slaughter weight, I have heard estimates ranging from 6 pounds corn/1 pound beef to 20 pounds corn/1 pound beef. Can you clarify?

Dallas County Iowa

3 Responses

It is a general question, and I am a swine specialist, so I had to look up the beef and broiler answers. To get data from real farm operations, go to http://www.finbin.umn.edu/ and generate a report, look for pounds of feed per pound of gain. Beef conversion has to be interpreted because of wet feeding (water adds pounds to the conversion ratio). Check out: http://www.beefusa.org/CMDocs/BeefUSA/Resources/cc2012-Beef-Feed-Efficiency--Dan-Shike.pdf. In this paper, the dry matter feed-to-gain ratio is in the 4.5 to 7.5 to 1 range. Of course, ruminant animals need roughage. Many feedlots are using a wet syrup byproduct from the ethanol industry, that would have a higher feed to gain ratio because of the high water content of the feed stuff.

Wean to finish swine feed-to-gain ratios have been about 2.8 to 1 and improving to as low as 2.4 to 1 in some cases as genetics and growth rate improve. I don't know the exact current feed-to-gain ratio for broilers. Feed-to-gain ratio is cited at 1.8 to 1 for a 42 day broiler from the following reference: http://www2.ca.uky.edu/poultryprofitability/Production_manual/Chapter6_Factors_affecting_feed_conver... .

Start weights and end weights make a difference, as you fed animals to heavier weights the animal usually require more feed per unit of gain.

Thank you! This is exactly what I wanted to know.

Glad to hear it, thanks for the feedback.