Dutch dairy company Royal FrieslandCampina, DSM, and feed supplier Agrifirm partnered to incorporate Bovaer into the regular farming activities of 158 dairy farms with about 20,000 cows in the Netherlands in the world’s first large-scale on-farm use of the methane-reducing feed additive for cattle.
The six-month program that started in 2022 confirmed that Bovaer can be easily introduced at scale without affecting animal health, milk production, or milk composition.
The successful collaboration led to a decrease of 10,000 tons of CO2e in methane emissions; a 28% decrease in enteric emissions.
DSM explained that the development of the feed additive, Bovaer, has taken a decade, featuring 45 farm trials in 13 countries across four continents. Moreover, 48 peer-reviewed articles in different scientific journals also back the product.
According to some participating farmers, adopting the feed additive requires little effort, as the minimum dose of 150 grams is mixed with the minerals the farmers already feed their animals.
“As an industry, we are at a tipping point. We have to move along and reduce methane emissions… We will continue to use the feed additive. I am happy that we can make an additional contribution to reducing our impact on the climate,” Lars van den Nieuwenhof, who owns a farm with 125 dairy cows in North Brabant, commented.
“I participated in the Bovaer pilot because I was curious whether the feed additive would affect the fermentation process. I did not notice any effect as we added Bovaer to the ration,” Jelle, another participating farmer, commented.
These results support the quicker adoption of Bovaer by the dairy sector, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and helping the Netherlands to reach its climate targets.
This iconic partnership aims at achieving a 33% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions on Royal FrieslandCampina’s member dairy farms by 2030 (vs. 2015).
“Together with our member dairy farmers, we are working towards producing net climate-neutral dairy by 2050 at the latest. We are proud to be the first dairy company in Europe to gain valuable practical experience with Bovaer on a large scale,” Sanne Griffioen, Director of farm sustainability FrieslandCampina, remarked.
A few months ago, DSM announced that plans were underway to construct a manufacturing facility for Bovaer in Scotland to support large-scale production.
“We look forward to continuing our partnership with FrieslandCampina and Agrifirm to ensure Bovaer reaches more cows and makes an even greater contribution to tackling agricultural methane emissions,” Mark van Nieuwland, VP of Bovaer DSM, commented.
“With these developments, we also play a key role in supporting the near-term climate goals of the Global Methane Pledge, signed by more than 150 countries including the Netherlands,” Nieuwland added.