Arla Foods and its 10,300 farmer-owners have launched their most ambitious targets so far to accelerate the transition to sustainable dairy production.
The Denmark-headquartered cooperative aims to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 30% per kg of milk over the next decade and work towards carbon net zero emissions by 2050.
The new strategy covers the whole value chain from cow to consumer and addresses the areas of climate, air, water and nature.
While the target is set for all markets where Arla operates, some countries might reach the target sooner based on local conditions, the company said.
Arla Foods chairman and dairy farmer Jan Toft Nørgaard. “We have worked towards sustainable farming for years and we need to go further and faster, not least to help fight climate change, which affects everyone on the planet, especially us farmers.”
Arla Foods CEO Peder Tuborgh said: “With our farmers’ further commitment, we are in a strong position to ensure that people maintain confidence in dairy as part of a healthy and sustainable diet for the future. Dairy is enjoyed across the world and plays an important role in providing nourishment to a growing world population – from a basic glass of fresh school milk to advanced whey proteins used in optimised medical nutrition.”
He added: “We believe that a growing number of consumers are willing to reward the most sustainable dairy farmers by paying a little more for their milk in the same way as we have seen with organic dairy. From today we are starting to work with a group of progressive farmers in both Denmark and Sweden to be able to offer more sustainable conventional and organic fresh milks leading the way on climate, animal welfare and farm management.”
Arla said the lion’s share of the total emissions from a dairy value chain comes from the farms. For obvious reasons, it’s not possible to reduce a cow’s methane emissions completely, but it can be significantly reduced, for example through optimised feed composition, which is a research area that the firm is investing in.
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2019