Invited review: Phenotypes to genetically reduce greenhouse gas emissions in dairying

Y de Haas, M Pszczola, H Soyeurt, E Wall, J Lassen

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

20 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Phenotypes have been reviewed to select for lower-emitting animals in order to decrease the environmental footprint of dairy cattle products. This includes direct selection for breath measurements, as well as indirect selection via indicator traits such as feed intake, milk spectral data, and rumen microbial communities. Many of these traits are expensive or difficult to record, or both, but with genomic selection, inclusion of methane emission as a breeding goal trait is feasible, even with a limited number of registrations. At present, methane emission is not included among breeding goals for dairy cattle worldwide. There is no incentive to include enteric methane in breeding goals, although global warming and the release of greenhouse gases is a much-debated political topic. However, if selection for reduced methane emission became a reality, there would be limited consensus as to which phenotype to select for: methane in liters per day or grams per day, methane in liters per kilogram of energy-corrected milk or dry matter intake, or a residual methane phenotype, where methane production is corrected for milk production and the weight of the cow. We have reviewed the advantages and disadvantages of these traits, and discuss the methods for selection and consequences for these phenotypes.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)855 - 870
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Dairy Science
Volume100
Issue number2
Early online date9 Dec 2016
DOIs
Publication statusFirst published - 9 Dec 2016

Fingerprint

greenhouse gas emissions
methane
milk production
phenotype
dairy cattle
breeding
ecological footprint
milk
selection methods
greenhouse gases
methane production
marker-assisted selection
spectral analysis
dry matter intake
global warming
microbial communities
rumen
feed intake
cows
energy

Keywords

  • Dairy cattle
  • Enteric methane
  • Environmental phenotypes
  • Genomic selection
  • Greenhouse gases

Cite this

de Haas, Y ; Pszczola, M ; Soyeurt, H ; Wall, E ; Lassen, J. / Invited review: Phenotypes to genetically reduce greenhouse gas emissions in dairying. In: Journal of Dairy Science. 2016 ; Vol. 100, No. 2. pp. 855 - 870.
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Invited review: Phenotypes to genetically reduce greenhouse gas emissions in dairying. / de Haas, Y; Pszczola, M; Soyeurt, H; Wall, E; Lassen, J.

In: Journal of Dairy Science, Vol. 100, No. 2, 09.12.2016, p. 855 - 870.

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

TY - JOUR

T1 - Invited review: Phenotypes to genetically reduce greenhouse gas emissions in dairying

AU - de Haas, Y

AU - Pszczola, M

AU - Soyeurt, H

AU - Wall, E

AU - Lassen, J

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AB - Phenotypes have been reviewed to select for lower-emitting animals in order to decrease the environmental footprint of dairy cattle products. This includes direct selection for breath measurements, as well as indirect selection via indicator traits such as feed intake, milk spectral data, and rumen microbial communities. Many of these traits are expensive or difficult to record, or both, but with genomic selection, inclusion of methane emission as a breeding goal trait is feasible, even with a limited number of registrations. At present, methane emission is not included among breeding goals for dairy cattle worldwide. There is no incentive to include enteric methane in breeding goals, although global warming and the release of greenhouse gases is a much-debated political topic. However, if selection for reduced methane emission became a reality, there would be limited consensus as to which phenotype to select for: methane in liters per day or grams per day, methane in liters per kilogram of energy-corrected milk or dry matter intake, or a residual methane phenotype, where methane production is corrected for milk production and the weight of the cow. We have reviewed the advantages and disadvantages of these traits, and discuss the methods for selection and consequences for these phenotypes.

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KW - Enteric methane

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KW - Genomic selection

KW - Greenhouse gases

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