Triticale is a hybrid cereal derived from crossing wheat with rye. The objective in crossing the two cereals was to combine the desirable characteristics of wheat such as grain quality, productivity and disease resistance with the vigour and hardiness of rye.
The crude protein content ranges from 8-12% and TDN 75-85%. Protein content is similar to wheat and the quality of protein in hybrid varieties are better than wheat because of high proportion of lysine and sulphur containing amino acids. However, it is
deficient in amino acid-tryptophan.
As with rye, triticale is subject to ergot infestation. Studies using this hybrid have demonstrated increased liver abscesses in steers when compared with sorghum diets. Triticale contains trypsin inhibitors and alkyl resorcinols and both of these have been implicated in problems
of poor palatability and performance in livestock. Due to its poor performance, it is generally recommended that triticale be limited to 50% of the grain in the diets of farm animals.