Bovaer®: Farm-wise, climate-friendly

Significantly less methane emissions from cattle

More sustainable farming with Bovaer® cattle feed additive

As population and income levels grow, so do the demands humans place on our planet. Adapting to more sustainable ways is a responsibility we all share. If future generations are to enjoy the foods we know and love, we need to move forward in ways that are farm wise and climate friendly.

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Data based on status at time of filming - November 2020.

Methane from dairy production

Cows provide nutritious dairy products that we thrive on today - full of the high-quality protein, micronutrients and essential fatty acids our bodies need. Dairy cows also support the livelihood and food security of more than a billion people around the world.

However, cows generate methane, a greenhouse gas with consequences for our planet. Believe it or not, nearly 60% of emissions created globally during milk production come in the form of enteric methane, released into the atmosphere burp by burp. A single dairy cow can generate three tons of CO2 equivalent every year.

Reducing emissions to reduce climate change

Bovaer® is a feed additive for cows (and other ruminants, such as sheep, goats, and deer) researched and developed over 10 years by DSM. Just a quarter teaspoon of Bovaer® per cow per day suppresses the enzyme that triggers methane production in a cow’s rumen and consistently reduces enteric methane emission by approximately 30% for dairy cows and even higher percentages (up to 90%) for beef cows. It takes effect immediately and it’s safely broken down in the cow’s normal digestive system into compounds already naturally present in the cow's stomach. As soon as the additive is not fed anymore, full methane production resumes and there are no lasting effects in the cow. The feed additive Bovaer® therefore contributes to a significant and immediate reduction of the environmental footprint of beef and dairy products.

As a tool to fight climate change, this has the power to deliver quick and immediate wins for the planet. Methane’s warming effect is shorter lived and much more potent than carbon. So eliminating it begins to pay off right away. 

Putting our competences to work

Intense collaboration among scientists and experts in nutrition, biology, chemistry, engineering and analytics across the globe has made Bovaer® a reality. That endeavor, known as Project Clean Cow, encompassed >10 years, over 45 on-farm trials, and more than 48 peer-reviewed studies published in independent scientific journals.

Bovaer® is the most extensively studied and scientifically proven solution to the challenge of burped methane to date. No negative impact on animal welfare, feed consumption or performance has ever been identified. After blocking methane production in the stomach, Bovaer® is broken down into natural compounds and eliminated by the cow’s normal digestive processes and consistently reduces their methane emissions.

In September 2021, DSM received its first full regulatory approval to commercialize Bovaer® from the Brazilian and Chilean authorities, for application in beef, dairy, sheep and goats. Bovaer® has recently been filed for registration in Europe, where it will be available as soon as market authorization is granted. Registrations of the feed additive in other regions will follow.

Purpose-led

By helping to reduce the methane impact of cattle farming, we are helping to solve a major global sustainability challenge: supplying consumers with sufficient animal protein in a way that is farm wise and climate friendly. 

Performance-driven

Our solution is helping food retailers and brands to lower their carbon footprint while also meeting a growing consumer demand for sustainable, eco-friendly products. In addition to preparing market introduction for Bovaer®, DSM is mobilizing key players and influencers across the livestock value chain in order to shape a more sustainable - low-emission - future for the agricultural industry. 

Latest status

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Interviewed in November 2020, Mark van Nieuwland the VP & Program Director discusses the latest status of Bovaer® globally.

Press releases

Scientific publications

(42) T.L. Weber; X, Hao.; C.D. Gross; K.A. Beauchemin; S.X. Chang, Agronomy 2021, 11, 371. Effect of Manure from Cattle Fed 3-Nitrooxypropanol on Anthropogenic Greenhouse Gas Emissions Depends on Soil Type.

(41) A.W. Alemu, L.K.D. Pekrul, A.L. Shreck, C.W. Booker, S.M. McGinn, M. Kindermann,K.A. Beauchemin, Front. Anim. Sci. 2021, 2, 641590. doi: 10.3389/fanim.2021.641590. 3-Nitrooxypropanol Decreased Enteric Methane Production From Growing Beef Cattle in a Commercial Feedlot: Implications for Sustainable Beef Cattle Production.

(40) A.W. Alemu, A. L. Shreck, C. W. Booker, S. McGinn, L. KD Pekrul, M. Kindermann, Karen A Beauchemin, J. Anim. Sci. 2021, 99, 1-13. Use of 3-nitrooxypropanol in a commercial feedlot to decrease enteric methane emissions from cattle fed a corn-based finishing diet.

(39) S.J Meale, M. Popova, C.Saro, et al. Sci Rep 2021, 11, 3003. Early life dietary intervention in dairy calves results in a long-term reduction in methane emissions.

(38) E. Kebreab, X. Feng,California Air Resources Board Report, 2020. Strategies to reduce methane emissions from enteric and lagoon sources.

(37) X. Feng, E. Kebreab, PLoS ONE, 2020 15(9): e0234289. Net reductions in greenhouse gas emissions from feed additive use in California dairy cattle.

(36) X. M. Zhang, R.J. Gruninger, A. W. Alemu, M. Wang, Z. L. Tan, M. Kindermann, K. A. Beauchemin, J. Dairy. Sci. 2020, 2019-18077. 3-Nitrooxypropanol supplementation had little effect on fiber degradation and microbial colonization of forage particles when evaluated using the in situ ruminal incubation technique.

(35) A. Melgar, C. F. A. Lage, K. Nedelkov, S. E. Räisänen, H. Stefenoni, M. E. Fetter, Chen, J. Oh, S. Duval, M. Kindermann, N. D. Walker, A. N. Hristov, J. Dairy Sci. 2021, 104, 357-366. Enteric methane emission, milk production and composition of dairy cows fed 3-nitrooxypropanol.

(34) A.N. Hristov, A.Melgar, Animals, 2020, 1-7, doi:10.1017/S1751731120001731. Short communication: Relationship of dry matter intake with enteric methane emission measured with the GreenFeed system in dairy cows receiving a diet without or with 3-nitrooxypropanol.

(33) J. Owens, Scientific Reports 2020, accepted for publication. Greenhouse gas and ammonia emissions from stored manure from beef cattle supplemented 3-nitrooxypropanol and monensin to reduce enteric methane emissions.

(32) S. van Gastelen, G. Binnendijk,A. Bannink, J. Dijkstra, T. Zandstra, S.M. Duval, M. Kindermann, J.M.L Heck, J. Dairy Sci., 2020, 103,17936. DOI: 10.3168/jds.2019-17936. 3-Nitrooxypropanol decreases methane emissions and increases hydrogen emissions of early lactation dairy cows, with associated changes in nutrient digestibility and energy metabolism.

(31) A. Melgar, K. C. Welter, K. Nedelkov,C. M. M. R. Martins, M. T. Harper, J. Oh, S. E. Räisänen, X. Chen, S. F. Cueva, S. Duval, A. N. Hristov, J. Dairy Sci. 2020, 103, 6145–6156. Dose-response effect of 3-nitrooxypropanol on enteric methane emissions in dairy cows.

(30) H. Kim, H. Gun Lee, Y-C. Baek, S. Lee, J. Seo, J.Anim. Sci. Technol. 2020; 62, 31-42. The effects of dietary supplementation with 3-nitrooxypropanol on enteric methane emissions, rumen fermentation, and production performance in ruminants: a meta-analysis.

(29) C. Lee 1, S.-Ho Kim, K. Beauchemin, P. Celi, S. Duval, Animals, 2020, 10, 64. Short-Term Eating Preference of Beef Cattle Fed High Forage or High Grain Diets Supplemented with 3-Nitrooxypropanol.

(28) A. Melgar, M.T. Harper, J. Oh, F. Giallongo, M.E. Young, T.L. Ott, S. Duval, A.N. Hristov, J. Dairy. Sci. 2019, doi.org/10.3168/jds.2019-17085. Effects of 3-nitrooxypropanol on rumen fermentation, lactational performance, and resumption of ovarian cyclicity in dairy cows.

(27) V. N. Nkemka, K. A. Beauchemin, X. Hao, Water Sci Technol, 2019, wst2019302. Treatment of feces from beef cattle fed the enteric methane inhibitor 3-nitrooxypropanol.

(26) S. M. McGinn, T. K. Flesch, K. A. Beauchemin, A. Shreck and M. Kindermann, J. Environ. Qual. 2019, doi:10.2134/jeq2018.11.0412, Micrometeorological Methods for Measuring Methane Emission Reduction at Beef Cattle Feedlots: Evaluation of 3-Nitrooxypropanol Feed Additive.

(25) S.H. Kim, C. Lee, H.A. Pechtl, J. M. Hettick, M. R. Campler, M. D. Pairis-Garcia, K.A. Beauchemin, P. Celi, S.M. Duval, J. Anim Sci. 2019, 2687–2699. Effects of 3-nitrooxypropanol on enteric methane production, rumen fermentation, and feeding behavior in beef cattle fed a high-forage or high-grain diet.

(24) D. Van Wesemael, L. Vandaele, B. Ampe, H. Cattrysse, S. Duval, M. Kindermann, V. Fievez, S. De Campeneere, N. Peire, J. Dairy Sci. 2019, 102, 1-8. Reducing enteric methane emissions from dairy cattle: Two ways to supplement 3-Nitrooxypropanol.

(23) P.S. Alvarez-Hess, S.M. Little,  P.J. Moate, J.L. Jacobs, K. A. Beauchemin, R.J. Eckard, Agricult. Syst. 2019, 169, 14-23. A partial life cycle assessment of the greenhouse gas mitigation potential of feeding 3-nitrooxypropanol and nitrate to cattle.

(22) A. Thiel, A.C.M. Schoenmakers, I.A.J. Verbaan, E. Chenal, S. Etheve, P. Beilstein, Food Chem. Toxicol. 2019, 123, 566-573. 3-NOP: Mutagenicity and genotoxicity assessment.

(21) J. Dijkstra, A. Bannink, J. France, E. Kebreab,S. van Gastelen, J. Dairy Sci. 2018, 101 , 9041 – 9047. Antimethanogenic effects of 3-nitrooxypropanol depend on supplementation dose, dietary fiber content, and cattle type.

(20) G. Martinez-Fernandez, S. Duval, M. Kindermann, HJ. Schirra HJ, SE. Denman, CS. McSweeney  Front. Microbiol., 2018, 9, 15823. 3-NOP vs. Halogenated Compound: Methane Production, Ruminal Fermentation and Microbial Community Response in Forage Fed Cattle.

(19) S. Muetzel, R.S. Ronimus, K. Lunn, M. Kindermann, S. Duval, M. Tavendale, Anim. Feed Sci. Technol. 2018, 244, 88-92. A small scale rumen incubation system to screen chemical libraries for potential methane inhibitors.

(18) D. Vyas, A.W. Alemu, S. M. McGinn, S. M. Duval, M. Kindermann, K. A. Beauchemin; J. Animal Sci. 2018, 96, 2923-2938. The combined effects of supplementing monensin and 3-nitrooxypropanol on methane emissions, growth rate, and feed conversion efficiency in beef cattle fed high forage and high grain diets.

(17) J. Guyader, E. M. Ungerfeld, K. A. Beauchemin, Front. Microbiol. 2017, 8, 393. Redirection of Metabolic Hydrogen by Inhibiting Methanogenesis in the Rumen Simulation Technique (RUSITEC).

(16) J. Haisan, Y. Sun, L. Guan, K. A. Beauchemin, A. Iwaasa, S. Duval, M. Kindermann, D. R. Barreda, M. Oba, Anim. Prod. Sci. 2017, 57, 282-289. The effects of feeding 3-nitrooxypropanol at two doses on milk production, rumen fermentation, plasma metabolites, nutrient digestibility, and methane emissions in lactating Holstein cows.

(15) A. Romero-Pérez, E. K. Okine, L. L. Guan, S. M. Duval, M. Kindermann, K. A. Beauchemin, J. Anim. Sci. 2017, 95, 4072–4077. Evaluation of methane inhibitor 3-nitrooxypropanol and monensin in a high-grain diet using the rumen simulation technique (Rusitec).

(14) A. Jayanegara, K. A. Sarwono, M. Kondo, H. Matsui, M. Ridla, E. B. Laconi, Nahrowi, Ital. J. Anim. Sci. 2017, 1-7. Use of 3-nitrooxypropanol as feed additive for mitigating enteric methane emissions from ruminants: a meta-analysis.

(13) D. Vyas, S. M. McGinn, S. M. Duval, M. K. Kindermann, K. A. Beauchemin, Anim. Prod. Sci. 2016, 58, 1049-1055. Optimal dose of 3-nitrooxypropanol for decreasing enteric methane emissions from beef cattle fed high-forage and high-grain diets.

(12) E. C. Duin, T. Wagner, S. Shima, D. Prakash, B. Cronin, D. R. Yáñez-Ruiz, S. Duval, R. Rümbeli, R. T. Stemmler, R. K. Thauer, M. Kindermann, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 2016, 113, 6172-6177. Mode of action uncovered for the specific reduction of methane emissions from ruminants by 3-NOP.

(11) J. C. Lopes, L. F. de Matos, M. T. Harper, F. Giallongo, J. Oh, D. Gruen, S. Ono, M. Kindermann, S. Duval, A. N. Hristov, J. Dairy Sci. 2016, 99, 5335-5344. Effect of 3-NOP on methane and hydrogen emissions, methane isotopic signature, and ruminal fermentation in dairy cows.

(10) D. Vyas, S. M. McGinn, S. M. Duval, M. Kindermann, K. A. Beauchemin, J. Anim. Sci. 2016, 94, 2024-2034. Effects of sustained reduction of enteric methane emissions with dietary supplementation of 3-nitrooxypropanol on growth performance of growing and finishing beef cattle.

(9) A. Romero-Pérez, E. K. Okine, L. L. Guan, S.M. Duval, M. Kindermann, K. A. Beauchemin, Anim. Feed Sci.Technol. 2016, 220, 67-72. Effects of 3-NOP and monensin on methane production using a forage-based diet in Rusitec fermenters.

(8) A. N. Hristov, J. Oh, F. Giallongo, T. Frederick, M. T. Harper, H. Weeks, A. F. Branco, W. J. Price, P. J. Moate, M. H. Deighton, S. R. O. Williams, M. Kindermann, S. Duval, J. Dairy Sci. 2016, 99, 5461-5465. Comparison of the GreenFeed system with the sulfur hexafluoride tracer technique for measuring enteric methane emissions from dairy cows.

(7) A. N. Hristov, J. Oh, F. Giallongo, T. W. Frederick, M. T. Harper, H. L. Weeks, A. F. Branco, P. J. Moate, M. H. Deighton, S. R. O. Williams, M. Kindermann, S. Duval, Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. 2015, 112, 10663-10668. An inhibitor persistently decreased enteric methane emission from dairy cows with no negative effect on milk production.

(6) A. Romero-Perez, E. K. Okine, S. M. McGinn, L. L. Guan, M. Oba, S. M. Duval, M. Kindermann, K. A. Beauchemin, J. Anim. Sci. 2015, 93, 1780-1791. Sustained reduction in methane production from long-term addition of 3-nitrooxypropanol to a beef cattle diet.

(5) A. Romero-Pérez, E. K. Okine, L. L. Guan, S. M. Duval, M. Kindermann, K. A. Beauchemin, Anim. Feed Sci. Technol. 2015, 209, 98-109. Effects of 3-nitrooxypropanol on methane production using the rumen simulation technique (Rusitec).

(4) J. Haisan, Y. Sun, L. L. Guan, K. A. Beauchemin, A. Iwaasa, S. Duval, D. R. Barreda, M. Oba, J. Dairy Sci. 2014, 97, 3110-3119. The effects of feeding 3-nitrooxypropanol on methane emissions and productivity of Holstein cows in mid lactation.

(3) A. Romero-Perez, E. K. Okine, S. M. McGinn, L. L. Guan, M. Oba, S. M. Duval, M. Kindermann, K. A. Beauchemin, J. Anim. Sci 2014, 92, 4682-4693. The potential of 3-nitrooxypropanol to lower enteric methane emissions from beef cattle.

(2) C. K. Reynolds, D. J. Humphries, P. Kirton, M. Kindermann, S. Duval, W. Steinberg, J. Dairy Sci. 2014, 97, 3777-3789. Effects of 3-NOP on methane emission, digestion, and energy and nitrogen balance of lactating dairy cows.

(1) G. Martínez-Fernández, L. Abecia, A. Arco, G. Cantalapiedra-Hijar, A. I. Martín-García, E. Molina-Alcaide, M. Kindermann, S. Duval, D. R. Yáñez-Ruiz, J. Dairy Sci. 2014, 97, 3790-3799. Effects of ethyl-3-nitrooxy propionate and 3-nitrooxypropanol on ruminal fermentation, microbial abundance, and methane emissions in sheep.

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