Hank Puch

Hank Puch

Manager, Large Animal Metabolism Unit & Research Associate, Ruminant Microbiology, Nutrition

I feel very lucky to be able to apply my love for science in the field of animal nutrition



Ohio State University


Additionally, Puch is responsible for the day-to-day management of the Large Animal Metabolism Unit. 

Puch’s research expertise and interest includes:

  • In vitro fermentation (starch, fiber, microbial synthesis).
  • Metabolism using animal collections.
  • Rumen microbiology (traditional and DNA analysis).
  • In sacco digestibility (bypass proteins and forages).
  • Rumen environmental measurements (NH4, VFA, osmolarity, pH).
  • Site of digestion using intestinal cannulated animals.
  • Protected amino acid studies.
  • Design and development of computer controlled feeders.
  • Plastination of rumen tissue that can be used as a teaching tool. 

Involved in all research aspects of LAMU (Large Animal Metabolism Unit), both animal and laboratory, Puch has worked on Propel® Energy Nugget, USA Lysine testing, AMPLI-Calf® Starter and Grower, and Calibrate® Technologies. 

“One of my favorite activities at the Purina Animal Nutrition Center, besides doing research, is to meet with our customers who come to Gray Summit to learn about innovations and new products,” says Puch.

Puch grew up on a 265-acre polled Hereford farm in eastern Ohio. For nine years Puch raised and showed 4-H steers at the Jefferson County Fair and used the sale proceeds to pay for college tuition. “Back then, the proceeds from 18 steers was enough to pay for four years of undergraduate and a year of graduate school,” says Puch.

Puch earned a bachelor’s degree in agriculture and microbiology and a master’s degree in ruminant microbiology from Ohio State University. In 1978, Puch was hired to develop a small in-vitro lab at Purina to evaluate ingredients of unknown nutrition value. This small beginning led to the Large Animal Metabolism Unit. In 1992, Puch earned another master’s degree in biotechnology from Washington University-St. Louis. 

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