BACKGROUND: Dietary supplementation with oilseeds can reduce methane emission in ruminants, but only a few common seeds have been tested so far. This study tested safflower (Carthamus tinctorius), poppy (Papaver somniferum), hemp (Cannabis sativa), and camelina (Camelina sativa) seeds in vitro using coconut (Cocos nucifera) oil and linseed (Linum usitatissimum) as positive controls.
RESULTS: All the tested oilseeds suppressed methane yield (mL g-1 dry matter, up to 21%) compared to the non-supplemented control when provided at 70 g oil kg-1 dry matter, and they were as effective as coconut oil. Safflower and hemp were more effective than linseed (21% and 18% vs. 10%), whereas the effects of poppy and camelina were similar to linseed. When methane was related to digestible organic matter, only hemp and safflower seeds and coconut oil were effective compared to the non-supplemented control (up to 11%). The level of methanogenesis and the ratios of either the n-6:n-3 fatty acids or C18:2 :C18:3 in the seed lipids were not related.
CONCLUSION: Unconventional oilseeds widen the spectrum of oilseeds that can be used in dietary methane mitigation. In vivo confirmation of their methane mitigating effect is still needed, and their effects on animal performance still must be determined. © 2017 Society of Chemical Industry.