Pasture Biosciences

Vaccinating cattle for beef and dairy with less methane

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Leadership Profile

Why a Bioscientist is Heading Back to the Farm to Eliminate Burps

Matt Zehnder never expected a computer science and biology career would lead him back to the family ranching business. As the founder and CEO of Pasture Bio, he’s now leading the development of a new vaccine to reduce methane from cattle.

An Easy Yes for Ranchers and Farmers

The Climate Challenge
Cattle feed billions of people globally and are a big contributor to climate change. Microbes in their stomachs produce methane during digestion that’s released by burping (enteric fermentation).

Methane is 30x worse than CO2 because it traps more heat and drives near-term climate change. “Cutting methane is the strongest lever we have to slow climate change over the next 25 years,” says Inger Andersen, Executive Director of the UN Environment Program.

Seeking a Solution
Raised in a ranching family and trained in biotech, Matt knew solutions like chemical treatments or special feed additives wouldn’t scale. “In many ranches, cattle spend 70% of their time roaming; a solution needs to work with this natural behavior,” he explains.

Unlocking Gigascale
“Our vaccine aims to integrate into routine care without changing diets or grazing patterns,” Matt says. This innovation uses vaccine advancements achieved during COVID, like AI-powered computational tools, new supply chains, and a pipeline of talented scientists.

The Outcome
The global cattle population numbers about 1 billion and growing, and farmers and ranchers in the combined $1T dairy and beef market are eager for ways to reduce emissions.

Matt adds, “They’re attuned to the environment and care deeply but need practical options. They have tight margins and busy schedules, so working with us needs to be the easiest thing they do.'”

Meet Matt Zehnder

This is my 2nd time founding a company, and I’m doing it with laser focus. We’re building a thing. It needs to work and scale as soon as possible. The mission is clear.