June 3, 2021


Cargill to sell cow masks to cut methane emissions


Cargill Inc. will start selling methane-absorbing wearable devices for cows from UK startup Zelp Ltd, Transport Topics reported.

Cargill said it expects to start offering the devices to European dairy farmers next year. While the companies have yet to fix a price, Zelp says an annual subscription fee may start at about US$80 per cow.

Zelp's innovation was announced earlier this year (http://m.efeedlink.com/contents/01-06-2021/4a15e9ae-38d8-4768-bae1-db09217284d0-a181.html), which claims to cut methane emissions by 60%.

The latest collaboration could help Zelp secure demand for the mask through tapping on Cargill's extensive customer network.

"Cargill has an impressive reach across dairy farms in Europe," said Zelp CEO Francisco Norris. "They are uniquely positioned to distribute our technology to a large number of clients, both farmers and dairy companies, maximising the rollout from the very first year we hit the market."

Norris added that Zelp is working on miniaturising the technology and optimising the energy inside the device. It is in discussions with potential manufacturing partners and aims to commence mass production end 2021. The company targets to produce 50,000 units in the first year and up to 200,000 units in the next. Zelp is also close to completing its next financing round.

According to Sander van Zijderveld, Cargill's ruminant strategic marketing and technology lead for West Europe, Cargill plans to use the masks in combination with other solutions. For example, some food suppliers have started using feed additives to help cows produce less methane.

"The nice thing about Zelp is that it could complement a cow that is already receiving feed additives to reduce methane emissions," van Zijderveld  said. "It could still capture the methane that is coming out. We could reduce it even more."

Cargill targets to cut emissions from its global supply chains by 30% by 2030. In North America, it has set a 30% greenhouse gas reduction in its regional beef supply chain by the end of this decade.