Fonterra and Royal DSM, a global science-based company active in health, nutrition and sustainable living, have come together to work on reducing on-farm greenhouse gas emissions in New Zealand.

DSM’s feed additive product Bovaer effectively and consistently reduces methane emissions from cows by over 30% in non-pasture-based farming systems. To attempt the same in New Zealand’s pasture-based farming systems, Fonterra has joined forces with DSM.

While New Zealand dairy farms are acknowledged as having the lowest carbon footprint in the world among major milk producers, Fonterra says that it recognises that biological emissions produced by cows are a major contributor to the country’s overall emissions and is working to do whatever it can to find ways to reduce them.

“We need to find a breakthrough in reducing emissions from cows and Bovaer could provide exactly that,” says Fonterra group director of farm source Richard Allen.

“To work with DSM is an exciting opportunity for the Co-op.”

Fonterra chief science and technology officer, Professor Jeremy Hill, says the Co-op wants to explore and validate how Bovaer could work here in New Zealand, where cows are predominantly fed grass.

“We also see this as an opportunity to further accelerate our global leadership in low-carbon dairy products to create more value for our New Zealand milk.

“Fonterra is working closely with DSM New Zealand to ensure than any innovation is well tested and can easily be distributed and used by our farmers.”

DSM and Fonterra have worked together for many years, and Mark van Nieuwland, global programme had for DSM Nutritional Products says the company is proud to be collaborating with Fonterra in the field of sustainability and climate change.

“With Fonterra, we have an important partner to potentially commercialise Bovaer in New Zealand and globally,” says van Nieuwland.

“We look forward to combining our expertise and passion.”