Back to search

FFL-JA-Forskningsmidlene for jordbruk og matindustri

Mitigating methane emissions from dairy and beef cattle through pasture grazing (MethanePasture)

Alternative title: Reduksjon av metanutslipp fra melke- og kjøttfe ved beiting (Metanbeite)

Awarded: NOK 3.9 mill.

The MethanePasture project aims to increase sustainability in the production of milk and meat from dairy and beef cattle. This will be achieved through a series of experiments that, under Norwegian conditions, will provide better estimates of the production of methane from grazing animals compared with indoor feeding. The estimates will be calculated at national and at farm level based on results from early and late in the grazing season. The following assumptions will be tested i) pasture grazing dairy cows have a lower methane production per unit feed and per unit milk compared to cut-and-carry grass and grass silage feeding indoors, ii) reduction of methane by feed additives is greater in early than late pasture grazing dairy and beef cows, iii) current compared to improved HolosNor and HolosNorBeef models overestimate methane emissions from pasture grazing dairy and beef cows. By improving a farm advisory tool and engaging six actors from agricultural and food industry, MethanePasture ensures user-friendly and targeted outreach. Filling the knowledge gap if pasture grazing per se can reduce methane emission, and if methane reducing feed additives are more effective in early pasture grazing will provide practical and financial benefits to the society and industry.

The MethanePasture project aims to improve the environmental and social sustainability of ruminant livestock production and national and farm greenhouse gas inventory estimates by identifying the mitigation potential of pasture grazing and the effectiveness of additives fed to dairy and beef cows in early and late pasture season under Norwegian conditions. The following hypotheses aligning to the specific objectives are going to be tested i) pasture grazing dairy cows have a lower methane yield (per unit feed) and intensity (per unit milk) compared to cut-and-carry grass and grass silage feeding indoors, ii) reduction of methane yield and intensity by feed additives is greater in early than late pasture grazing dairy and beef cows, iii) current compared to improved HolosNor and HolosNorBeef models overestimate methane emissions from pasture grazing dairy and beef cows. By improving a farm advisory tool and involving 6 actors from agricultural and food industry, MethanePasture ensures user-friendly and targeted dissemination measures and provides applied knowledge relevant to the industry and society for holistic solutions reducing greenhouse gas emissions from ruminant production. Filling the knowledge gap if pasture grazing per se can reduce methane emission, and if methane reducing feed additives are more effective in early pasture grazing will provide substantial and timely benefits (practical and financial) to the society and industry.

Funding scheme:

FFL-JA-Forskningsmidlene for jordbruk og matindustri