DSM gets EU market approval for its methane-reducing feed additive

By Jane Byrne

- Last updated on GMT

© GettyImages/wiltilroeotte
© GettyImages/wiltilroeotte

Related tags Methane Dsm Efsa EU Commission

DSM has secured EU authorization for its methane-reducing feed additive for dairy cows, branded as Bovaer.

It is a significant milestone for the Netherlands-headquartered company. A spokesperson told us Bovaer is a "strong proof-point"​ of DSM’s purpose-led strategy and is a major step in delivering on the company's sustainability linked strategic initiatives.

After inclusion in the EU registry, expected in the coming weeks, it will be the first time a feed additive that is authorized for environmental benefits can be marketed in the EU.

Bovaer is the result of a decade of scientific research, including more than 50 peer-reviewed studies published in independent scientific journals and 48 on-farm trials in 14 countries globally. 

scientific opinion ​from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), published in November last year, concluded that the additive, which consists of 3‐nitrooxypropanol (3-NOP), is efficacious in reducing methane emissions by cows for milk production, that its use is safe for the animals and for consumers and it does not impact the quality of the dairy products.

It has been estimated that use of the feed additive will cut methane emissions in dairy cows by between 20% and 35%, without affecting production. 

A 2021 report​ from the UN Environment Program (UNEP) concluded livestock emissions – from manure and gastro-enteric releases – account for roughly a third of human-caused methane emissions. 

In a statement on the approval of Bovaer, EU Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, Stella Kyriakides, said: "Innovation is key for a successful shift towards a more sustainable food system. The EU continues to lead the way in ensuring food safety while adapting to new technologies that can make food production more sustainable. Cutting farming-related methane emissions is key in our fight against climate change and today's approval is a very telling example of what we can achieve through new agricultural innovations.”


After receiving full regulatory approvals in Brazil and Chile for Bovaer in early September 2021, DSM signed a development agreement​ with JBS, one of the world's largest food producers. The company said it has also entered into partnerships with several major dairy companies to prepare for the implementation of Bovaer at large scale.

Last November saw DSM announce​ it was building a new manufacturing plant for the methane emissions targeted feed additive at its existing manufacturing site in Dalry, Scotland. The build will be supported by Scottish Enterprise.

DSM told us it has enough commercial product volumes of the product for near term market development. However, to prepare for anticipated further scale up in the next years, a new production facility is required. Initial work on the Dalry plant has already got underway, with the facility set to be operational in 2025.

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