Due to an increase in the demand for animal-source food, such as milk and meat, environmental problems related to keeping of livestock increase. An example is the emission of greenhouse gases, contributing to climate change.
To reduce greenhouse gas emissions from dairy farming, feeding and breeding strategies have been proposed. Strategies, however, are only effective when they reduce emissions along the entire chain and costs are limited.
Reduce greenhouse gas emissions
To identify which strategies offer potential to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in practice, an integral evaluation was performed. Results show that there are several options to reduce greenhouse gas emissions along the dairy production chain; some are more cost-effective than others. Feeding nitrate and feeding less mature grass and grass silage, for example, are more cost-effective than feeding linseed. Furthermore, breeding for increased longevity and, especially on less efficient farms, for increased milk yield, can contribute to reduced emissions. It was concluded, however, that a combination of strategies is required to substantially reduce greenhouse gas emissions from dairy farming.