News last update:6 Aug 2012

Oregano decreases belching in cattle

A Penn State dairy scientist has come up with a solution for cattle belching by adding an oregano-based supplement to cattle feed.

Alexander Hristov, an associate professor of dairy nutrition at Penn State University said that methane remained a major issue with cattle as livestock across the world emit an estimated 37% of anthropogenic methane.
Because methane has the potential to damage the planet more rapidly than carbon dioxide, scientists are looking for ways to reduce cattle belching.
Hristov may have found a solution to this as cattle that were fed oregano-based supplements in their feed emitted 40% less methane when they burped.
The herbal feed technique took around 6 years to perfect and results indicated another welcome development: a higher milk yield.
Hristov said this was because loss of methane resulted in energy loss for the cows, but since this was being conserved using the oregano supplement, the cows were able to use this energy to produce more milk.
The next step for Hristov is to isolate the beneficial components in oregano so as to produce a simple supplement to reduce methane emissions from cattle belching.

Dick Ziggers

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