Honey bee on camelina flower by James Eklund, USDA
Camelina is an oilseed crop that can be used to make biodiesel, an environmentally friendly alternative to diesel fuel. Camelina grows well on marginal land and uses little water and fertilizer. Camelina has been being used in feed mixtures for beef cattle and hogs. On February 6, 2009, Great Plains Camelina company announced that camelina meal will be available for use as broiler chicken feed. While high in protein and vitamin E, camelina is also a source for omega-3 fatty acids. The omega-3 fatty acids are beneficial in weight gain for the chickens. Further, the meat from chickens will contain the omega-3s, making it healthier for human consumption. Great Plains is working with Texas A&M University on an additional study of camelina as feed for egg-laying chickens that is expected to begin within the next several weeks. The company is already discussing with the FDA the use of camelina in feed for dairy cattle.