Arla is creating what it claims is the world’s largest database for the dairy industry as it ploughs ahead towards carbon net zero by 2050.
To build the database, Arla’s 9,900 farmer owners will input externally verified data from their farm covering everything from herd size to housing, to milk volumes, feed, energy and fuel usage on farm and renewable energy production.
This information will then give the farmer an overall environmental score and help identify areas they can further reduce their on farm carbon emissions.
“This will help Arla continue to produce dairy foods that are nutritionally rich and environmentally friendly in spite of a growing global population,” said Ash Amirahmadi, Managing Director Arla Foods UK.
The data captured will enable each farmer to see what level of carbon emissions they produce per litre of milk and identify where there is room for improvement. Average reductions on each farm of 3% per year would see Arla on track to hit its on farm carbon reduction targets of 30% by 2030.
With farmers who participate in the programme being paid more for their milk, it is expected at least 90% of Arla’s farmer owners will do so – meaning this new initiative will have a huge impact on emissions overall.
“Whilst there is a lot of negative comment about the impact of food production, farmers are, in reality, the caretakers of the countryside and inextricably linked to many positive natural process that are critical to caring for the world around us,” added Mr Amirahmadi.
“This initiative shows the commitment of Arla farmers to care for Britains countryside and play their part in tackling our climate emergency.”