DUBBED the ‘calfeteria trial’, the purpose of the experiment is to determine which ration cattle find more palatable and more likely to eat, and how the formulation they choose impacts reductions in methane generation.
The cattle in the trial will be provided the choice of a total mix ration containing three different treatments of Rumin8’s anti-methanogenic product, as well as a control product.
The trial will help inform efficacy, dosing and palatability decisions as Rumin8 moves from in vitro to in vivo trials.
“If cattle won’t eat a ration because they don’t like a particular dose rate or formulation, then it doesn’t matter how effective the feed additive is at reducing methane generation because it won’t be ingested by the animal and farmers won’t use it because it limits weight gain in their cattle,” said Rumin8 CEO David Messina.
“If cattle do avoid a particular treatment we have the ability to adjust taste or delivery mechanism to overcome the issue, but success for us is that cattle demonstrate zero feeding preference and we can focus on dosing and its impact on efficacy.”
Mr Messina said due to the manufacturing process used by Rumin8 to create its anti-methanogenic feed additives, the company was able to generate a highly repeatable product with respect to dosing.
“Our laboratory work to date indicates that bigger isn’t always better when it comes to dosing. In some cases, product with lower concentrations of the active ingredient performed just as well as high concentrations.”
Rumin8 harnesses lessons from nature, to create climate friendly supplements which reduce methane emissions from livestock.
Rumin8’s unique strength is in its patent-protected technology and proprietary expertise in synthesising and stabilising otherwise volatile bioactive compounds (compounds that degrade or evaporate when separated from their natural plant-based carrier), which are found in nature.
The Company’s technology is applicable to a range of methane reducing compounds found in plants and we are developing a range of feed supplements that can be provided to livestock in feed lot and pasture applications.
Rumin8 is a funding recipient of AusIndustry’s Entrepreneur’s Program.