Investigating the use of seaweed as silage in feed for ruminant livestock

Focus Pty Ltd

  • Project code: PRO-015758

  • Project stage: Closed

  • Project start date: Tuesday, March 1, 2022

  • Project completion date: Saturday, July 1, 2023

  • National Priority: NEI - New and Emerging Industries - SM1


This project builds the business case and potential market for farmed seaweeds that can be used within pasture-based livestock systems, as a silage admix. Currently beef and dairy producers in southern Australia are moving to increase use of silage as a year-round fodder supplement, so this medium provides a convenient delivery mechanism. This project will assess the outcomes from feeding ensiled Durvilleae potatorum (Bull kelp) and Phyllospora comosa (Cray weed).
This project builds on existing trials comparing the performance of asparagopsis, mixed kelp seaweeds and biochar for palatability and impacts in a controlled feeding system. The combined results from these two projects can enable development of the business case for both seaweed farmers as producers and livestock farmers as consumers.


New and Emerging Industries

Research Organisation

Focus Pty Ltd

Objective Summary

1. To expand the future market for farmed seaweed within pasture-based livestock industries, through farming new seaweed species that are appropriate as silage feedstock.
2. To identify the price point at which these ensiled seaweed supplements will be attractive to livestock farms based on the return on investment.
3. To review the return on investment of producing and using ensiled seaweed.
1. To identify the price point at which using seaweed from any source as a farm input for any application will be attractive to livestock farms based on the return on investment.
2. To document the problems and challenges of making silage from seaweed. (substantially completed)
3. To provide information on regulatory obstacles to wild harvesting of seaweed from estuaries or beaches, and ecologically sound principles for regulatory reform.