June 20, 2024

NutraMaize receives $650,000 USDA grant

Research continues on orange corn

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — NutraMaize received a $650,000 U.S. Department of Agriculture grant to scale research on orange corn that improves poultry health and egg yolk pigmentation.

“Our previous research shows that when used in poultry feed, NutraMaize Orange Corn has the potential to improve animal welfare, consumer well-being and producer profitability,” said NutraMaize CEO Evan Rocheford.

“We’ve shown that it can reduce the incidence and severity of footpad dermatitis, a common health problem for poultry, and significantly enhance the depth of color and health-benefiting antioxidant carotenoid content in egg yolks.”

The goal of the Phase II project is to demonstrate that the corn can deliver the health benefits of carotenoids to poultry and consumers on a commercial scale.

Carotenoids are natural antioxidant pigments that give many fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, their orange color and health-benefiting reputations.

“In addition to improving poultry health, the carotenoids found in NutraMaize Orange Corn have a number of well-documented health benefits for humans, such as significantly reducing the risk of age-related macular degeneration, the leading cause of vision loss among older Americans,” Rocheford said.

“This means that orange corn has the potential to improve animal welfare and reduce disease-related losses for producers while simultaneously improving consumer well-being by enhancing the nutritional quality of one of America’s most important protein sources — eggs.”

NutraMaize will work with Darrin Karcher, associate professor of animal sciences at Purdue University, and the USDA Agricultural Research Service’s National Poultry Research Center in Athens, Georgia.

The team will conduct research studies at Purdue’s Animal Sciences Research and Education Center and partner with grain farmers and commercial poultry producers to conduct field studies.

Rocheford said the company is looking for more producers to partner with to conduct commercial trials over the coming years.

“Our mission is to help improve the well-being of as many people and animals as possible,” Rocheford said.

“So, we want to talk to every poultry producer, feed mill, grain handler, farmer and seed company who sees the potential value NutraMaize Orange Corn can provide at scale.”

Learn more about NutraMaize at www.nutramaize.com.

Erica Quinlan

Erica Quinlan

Field Editor