In a bid to achieve sustainable cotton and beef production, an Australian company uses discarded cotton seeds to produce high-protein cattle feed and cooking oil.
The world’s cotton farms are producing more than fifty million tons of cottonseed but only utilizing one percent of those for planting cotton. While some waste cotton seeds make their way to livestock feeds, the vast majority goes to the world’s ailing dumpsites.
The Mort & Co’s Grassdale Feedlot company in Queensland, Australia, aims to use unused cotton seeds that usually end up in dumpsites by turning them into nutritious livestock feed.
To become animal feed, cotton seeds are dehulled to extract the edible components that cattle can eat. The process of dehulling produces cottonseed oil extract can also be used to make human-grade cooking oil. According to the company’s communications manager Marita Ramia, the utilization of even the oil byproduct makes the cottonseed-based animal feed production a zero-waste process.
Ramia hopes that using cotton seeds for animal feed production will help address the growing demand for the cotton and livestock industries to reduce their respective carbon and waste footprints and consider sustainability in business.