NETHERLANDS- Leading human and animal nutrition specialist, dsm-firmenich, reports that, since it was first developed, Bovaer has enabled the reduction of 50,000 tons of CO2e equivalent.

Dsm-firmenich is looking to achieve 100,000 tons of CO2e as the next milestone for the feed additive, which is targeted at methane emissions reduction in ruminants.

During its unveiling, DSM explained that the development of the feed additive, Bovaer, took a decade, featuring 45 farm trials in 13 countries across four continents. The product also had the backing of 48 peer-reviewed articles in different scientific journals.

An iconic partnership with Royal FrieslandCampina and feed supplier Agrifirm saw DSM conduct a pilot study involving about 158 farms in the Netherlands before being availed for mass usage globally. 

The partnership sought to achieve a 33% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions on Royal FrieslandCampina’s member dairy farms by 2030 (vs. 2015), eventually producing net climate-neutral dairy by 2050.

Outlining the progress dsm-firmenich has made in the first six months of this year, Mark van Nieuwland, VP of Bovaer, provided that authorities recently approved the sale of Bovaer in Paraguay, for use in dairy and beef cattle, making it the seventh country in Latin America to give the feed additive the green light. 

Additionally, Elanco Animal Health, dsm-firmenich’s strategic partner for developing, manufacturing, and commercializing Bovaer in the US, anticipates US approval and launch of the supplement in the first half of 2024.

Once approval is confirmed, we hope Bovaer will become a blockbuster product in the American market,” Nieuwland commented. 

Other notable adoptions include the Swedish dairy company, Norrmejerier, the Spanish agricultural cooperative, COVAP, Arla Foods, the Bel Group, and the French company behind the Babybel cheese brand.

Moreover, in early 2023, an expanded pilot scheme involving Valio, A-Rehu, National Resources Institute Finland, and the University of Helsinki began on the use of Bovaer with 3,100 dairy cows at 43 farms and could lead to its official adoption in Finland. 

Progress is exactly what the world needs right now, and recent developments make it clearer than ever that sustained, global action is the only way to mitigate the effects of the climate crisis,” remarked van Nieuwland. 

More novel solutions seek to reduce methane emissions in dairy 

As the need to develop solutions to climate change becomes more apparent, other companies are also coming up with other novel solutions to this issue. 

For example, researchers recently found that Asparagopsis taxiformis  (AT) a type of red algae, is among the most promising natural inhibitors of methane production in dairy cattle. 

AT contains compounds that inhibit the enzyme that catalyzes the final step in methane formation in the rumen, making it an effective methane inhibitor and feed additive, reducing methane emissions by 44%.

Additionally, scientists from Scotland’s Rural College (SRUC) have successfully extracted a chemical from daffodils called haemanthamine that could reduce methane emissions by up to 96% but in the laboratory, using an artificial cow’s stomach.

In on-farm application, through feed, the scientists are optimistic it could lower emissions in dairy cows by 30%.

As part of a four-year project that is backed by funding from the UK’s Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) and Innovate UK to the tune of £2.8m (US$3.6m) along with funding of close to £1m from industrial partners, the extract will be evaluated at several commercial dairy farms in the UK.

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