Cow Farts and Burps – Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Strange as it may seem, cattle producers, particularly dairy farmers, have been trying to reduce cow flatus and eructations (farts and burps) for decades now. If they're thinking about the problem globally, it's because the methane from these emissions makes a significant contribution to greenhouse gases (see Are Cow Farts Destroying the Planet?). If they're thinking locally, it's because these emissions are evidence that the animal is not being as efficient as it could be and forage is going to methane production instead of to meat or milk. Reducing Providing cattle with a digestive aid that helps them process fibrous feed is one way to reduce methane emissions and increase animal efficiency and productivity. Increased protein in the animal's diet reduces methane output, so animals eatin high protein forages in pastures, like weeds for example, would produce less methane. In fact there is a report that cows grazing Italian thistle produced less methane. Stonyfield Farm, a yogurt manufacturer, has been successfully experimenting with adding alfalfa and flaxseed to their diary cows' diets as a way of reducing methane. Researchers have also found that garlic, cinnamon and antibiotics all reduce methane production to some degree. Dr. Alexander Hristov, associate professor of dairy science at Pennsylvania State University has been looking at Oregano as a methane reducer.  In on

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