Rumin8 enters New Zealand with two cattle trials
19 January 2023
Australian climate technology company Rumin8 has commenced two safety and efficacy trials of its methane reducing feed supplements in New Zealand.
The trials – one on beef cattle and one on dairy cattle – seek to test Rumin8’s product integration in the New Zealand pasture-based systems.
Rumin8 identifies naturally occurring compounds that have anti-methanogenic properties, but instead of harvesting and extracting them from plants, is able to reproduce them in a highly efficient, low cost, scalable, and high-quality process to feed to livestock in order to reduce their emissions.
The trials will use different measuring methodologies – both recognised and validated in the field. The beef trial is utilising a methane measuring facility, which provides continuous measurements over 48 hours, while the dairy trial utilises Greenfeed systems which measure methane emissions throughout the duration of the trial taking short burst measurements throughout the day.
The first trial is a dose-response trial run by DairyNZ in Hamilton. Lactating dairy cows on a pasture based diet will be offered the methane reducing feed supplement three times per day over 45 to investigate the methane reduction potential in a pasture-based system.
As with all our ongoing trials, animal health will be closely monitored to validate the safety of our product. Blood samples are analyzed for markers of animal health, behaviour is monitored and feed intake measured each day. A further range of measurements and analyses will be undertaken, including methane production, methane intensity (methane per kg milk), milk production, milk components, feed conversion ratio, feed intake, and residues in milk and tissue.
The beef trial, using dairy-beef heifers, will be conducted by AgResearch at Palmerston North, where the NZ Ruminant Methane Measurement Centre is located.
In this trial, four doses will be offered to the cattle to determine minimum effective dose required. Rumin8’s product will be mixed with a small ration of pellets, while the main diet component will be freshly-cut pasture.
At conclusion of the trial, the beef heifers will spend 48 hours in a methane measuring facility, where methane production is continuously measured, as well as liveweights and samples of blood and tissue will be collected for analysis.
Rumin8 Managing Director David Messina said New Zealand had always been a target market.
“New Zealand farmers have a strong track record of innovation adoption and desire to minimize their environmental footprint,” he said.
“These trials will ensure that we can be confident in the safety and efficacy of our methane reducing feed additives in New Zealand dairy and beef production systems.”
Rumin8 was required to seek Agricultural Compounds and Veterinary Medicines approval prior to the commencement of the trial.
Other trials are currently underway in Australia and Brasil.
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