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UN: Better livestock handling curbs greenhouse gas

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September 26, 2013 07:20 AM EST | AP

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ROME — A U.N. report says improved livestock breeding and feeding practices could trim greenhouse gas emissions in the industry by up to 30 percent.

Livestock emissions account for 14.5 percent of all man-made heat-trapping gasses. Of that, cattle production for milk and meat is the worst offender, representing 65 percent of all livestock emissions.

The Rome-based U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization said in a report Thursday that breeding techniques that make more productive animals can reduce the size of herds, reducing the livestock's carbon footprint.

Another way to cut: improve feeding techniques to cut down on methane gasses generated during digestion.

FAO's Ren Wang, in charge of agriculture and consumer protection, said the cuts are do-able and important because demand for meat and poultry is growing in the developing world.