Spent grain, a major brewing industry byproduct, is generated in large quantities annually. A review article on “Composition and Nutrient Value Proposition of Brewers Spent Grain” published in the October issue of the Journal of Food Science summarizes research into the composition and preservation of brewers spent grain (BSG), different extraction techniques for BSG proteins and phenolic acids, and the bioactivities of these phenolic components.
The review also highlights BSG integration into foodstuffs for human consumption and animal feed supplements. BSG is considered a rich source of fiber, protein, and phenolic compounds. The phenolic acids present in BSG are hydroxycinnamic acids (ferulic, p-coumaric, and caffeic acids), which have many biofunctions, such as antioxidant, anticarcinogenic, antiatherogenic, and anti-inflammatory activities.
Previously, attempts have been made to integrate BSG into human food, such as ready-to-eat snacks, cookies and bread, to increase fiber and protein contents. The addition of BSG to animal feed leads to increased milk yields, higher fat contents in milk, and is a good source of essential amino acids. Therefore, many studies have concluded that integrating the biofunctional compounds in BSG into human food and animal feed has various health benefits.