Mike Jerina

Mike Jerina

Manager Equine Research

We’re not afraid to go back and do it again to ensure what goes to market is right.



University of Missouri - Saint Louis


Fifteen years ago, Jerina accepted a four-month internship at the farm where, in his words, “They handed me a pitchfork when I came in the door.”When he graduated, Purina offered him a job.

“Feeding horses on the farm is complex because we have to practice with such precision in terms of data collection,” said Jerina. “In the equine unit, we have x-ray and ultrasound machines, indirect calorimetry machines to measure caloric output during exercise, as well as EKG monitors to measure heart rate.It’s crazy the amount of testing we do before a product is offered to the public.But the time and effort pays.Our products are successful in the marketplace because they work.”

 Jerina's research expertise and interests include:

  • Exercise physiology.
  • Reproduction.
  • Growth and development.
  • Palatability.
  • Eating behavior and patterns.

Jerina points to Ultium® Competition Horse Formula, the premium feed for high-performance horses, as a breakthrough product he’s proudest of. “This feed was revolutionary in replacing starch and sugars with fiber and fat to fuel horses. We experimented with fat and fiber diets for many years with simultaneous university and Purina Animal Nutrition Center studies to discover that horses’ bodies can burn fat, with some conditioning, and provide the same or better energy reserves,” he says. “And now there’s an Ultium® Growth Horse Formula for young horses.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in animal science with a focus on equine reproduction from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and recently earned a master’s of business administration from the University of Missouri-Saint Louis.

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