29 May 2024

Is red tape hindering methane busting livestock feed?

From Nine To Noon, 9:35 am on 29 May 2024
Asparagopsis armata - the methane-busting seaweed

Asparagopsis armata - the methane-busting seaweed Photo: supplied

A New Zealand company producing a methane inhibitor from seaweed says poorly designed, onerous regulations mean it cannot work with farmers here to reduce emissions.

CH4 Aotearoa was founded in New Zealand in 2018, and has developed a seaweed-based feed supplement to reduce methane emissions from livestock. Trials have shown the feed can reduce methane produced by cows by up to 90 percent.

CH4 grows the seaweed in South Australia and near Bluff in Southland. But the company says current New Zealand law means the product would have to meet the same regulations as veterinary medicines even though the seaweed is naturally occurring and has been eaten by humans and animals for hundreds of years. Meanwhile, it says farmers in other countries are using methane inhibitors and marketing their meat as climate friendly.

Dr Steve Meller, founder and President of CH4 joins Kathryn.