The Alltech Feeding Times Issue 34 - Summer 2021 Summer 2021 - Page 10

feed manufacturers and producers globally measure and lower the carbon footprint of their feed . Feeds EA™ measures the environmental impact of feed production at the feed mill level by assessing the effects of existing compounds or blends . This is determined by calculating the greenhouse gas emissions from production , cultivation , processing , energy utilization and transportation in feed manufacturing . Feeds EA™ can calculate emissions from a database of more than 300 ingredients , including raw materials , soya products , byproducts and additives .
By reducing food waste through circular agriculture-type initiatives , we can be confident about the resilience of our food production systems to embrace more efficient resource utilization . This is exemplified in initiatives such as the supplementation of byproducts to ruminants and closing nutrient loops . By lowering food loss and waste in our livestock production systems in a verifiable way , we can continue to make a strong case for the sustainable solutions our industry offers in slowing the pace of climate change .
Mitigating waste
Precision agriculture and its application to animal nutrition has been proven , in recent Alltech metaanalyses on dairy ( Salami et al ., 2021 ) and beef research ( Salami et al ., 2020 ), to lower environmental impact through improved nitrogen utilization in ruminant systems . Optigen ® supplementation in dairy diets was shown to :
• Improve nitrogen utilization efficiency in dairy cattle
by 4 %, thanks to better nitrogen capture in the rumen .
• Reduce manure nitrogen excretion by 12 – 13 g of nitrogen / cow / day .
This data suggests , for example , that the use of Optigen could reduce the annual manure nitrogen excretion from the U . S . dairy sector by an average of 51,509 metric tons , based on the annual milk output .
Simply put , this approach is trying to provide “ the right amount of nitrogen at the right time in the right place ” to help in reducing waste on-farm . Results from the meta-analysis also showed that the use of Optigen in dairy diets resulted in carbon savings of around 54 g of CO2e per kg of milk . When extrapolated to the annual milk output of the German dairy sector , for example , this would be equivalent to a carbon emission reduction of 1.8 million metric tons of CO2e . Such carbon savings represent 16 % of the entire reduction target for German agriculture by 2030 .
A simulation analysis based on the results of the metaanalysis indicated that feeding Optigen to 1,000 dairy cows would :
• Increase income over feed costs by $ 18,000 .
• Reduce the carbon footprint of the herd by 647 metric tons of CO2e . That carbon reduction is equivalent to taking 424 cars off the road or 436 houses worth of electricity usage .
The meta-analysis on beef research highlighted how the 10 THE FEEDING TIMES