Cow feed that reduces methane emissions is about to be rolled out in Europe

A feed additive that reduces methane released by cows – a major contributor to agricultural emissions – has come close to being sold in Europe.

he food watchdog from the European Union has declared that the product Bovaer from the Dutch nutrition company Royal DSM NV is safe and effective for dairy cattle. It was not asked to decide on the safety levels for other categories such as beef. Europe is the second largest producer of milk in the world, and Bovaer has already been approved for beef and dairy cows as well as sheep and goats in Chile and beef giant Brazil.

The agricultural sector faces increased pressure to become greener as governments and investors focus on tackling global warming, and tackling methane emissions is one of the most critical climate challenges for the world. agricultural industry. Solutions also sought by companies and researchers include other supplements, face masks for cows and “climate-smart” farmed cattle.

Beef and dairy cattle account for about two-thirds of greenhouse gas emissions from livestock, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations. Bovaer can reduce methane emissions from dairy cows by around 30%, a spokesperson for Royal DSM said.

“Compared to five to eight years ago, the world has changed dramatically, said Dimitri de Vreeze, DSM’s co-managing director, in an interview in October. “Governments, farmers, consumers and our brand owners all recognize that this is a problem we need to tackle.”

The European Commission will need to approve the European Food Safety Authority’s decision before Bovaer’s deployment, which typically takes around six months. The Commission’s approval would allow Royal DSM to launch market development for the product in Europe in the first half of next year, the company said in a statement.

In areas where the product is already licensed, farmers can buy premixes with the additive or buy it themselves and add it to the cow’s feed. It is also pending approval in New Zealand and the United States.

Bloomberg


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