Innovative seaweed producer in Tasmania, Sea Forest, has won a $3.8 million Federal Government grant to expand the production of its feed supplement to cut methane emissions from livestock.
The grant is part of the government’s Securing Raw Materials Program, which is supporting businesses to expand in regional areas to research and develop innovative and locally sourced raw materials.
The Government’s $3.8 million funding contribution will enable Sea Forest to further expand its commercial scale production of the red seaweed, Asparagopsis.
The new funding is additional to the previous $1.67 million in Federal Government grants provided over the last year to Sea Forest, which is dramatically lifting its production of Asparagopsis following a major property acquisition in Swansea, Tasmania.
The acquisition of a 30-hectare site, formerly an abalone farm, includes 660 land-based ponds for the production of the Asparagopsis seaweed feed supplement for livestock, which is proven to have a significant impact in cutting methane emissions and, as a result, contribute to the slowing of global warming.
The Swansea operation will supplement Sea Forest’s marine farming, harvesting and processing operations at its 1,800-hectare marine farm at Triabunna, also located north of Hobart.
CEO of Sea Forest, Mr Sam Elsom said “The Federal Government recognizes the growing popularity of our unique seaweed supplement, which is proven to cut methane emissions in livestock – one of the major contributors to methane emissions.
“We are currently conducting industry trials of Sea Forest’s SeaFeed products with a range of beef, diary and wool companies across Australia and New Zealand, including Fonterra, Australian Agricultural Company and Stockyard,” he added.
Sea Forest is expanding production to supplement over 400,000 cattle annually from its Triabunna and Swansea operations, which will eliminate more than 1 million tonnes of CO2 emissions from livestock per year.