The Future of Dairy

Arla is one of the five largest dairy companies in the world, selling products like milk, yogurt and cheese in more than 100 countries. Arla Netherlands wants to make it easier for people to live healthier lives due to good nutrition and to do so in a way that is as sustainable as possible for the planet, the people and animals. The dairy cooperative is convinced that limiting global warming is crucial for the production of a nutritious and sustainable diet. Arla Netherlands’ goal is clear: the consumer must be able to enjoy a glass of milk without having an impact on the climate. They are committed to a better future for tomorrow’s generation.

Completely Carbon Neutral

The climate is changing. The earth’s temperature is rising. Arla is convinced that things must and can be done differently. That is why the dairy cooperative has been working for years on organic production and reducing its impact on the climate throughout the supply chain. The most recent example of this is the introduction of Arla carbon neutral organic products, the first dairy products on the Dutch market that are carbon neutral from cow to refrigerator. To get there, Arla is working with Climate Neutral Group. The new product line has also been positively evaluated against CNG’s Climate Neutral Certified Standard, which means that Arla carbon neutral organic meets the following conditions:

  1. All greenhouse gases (CO2, methane and nitrous oxide) that Arla organic emits throughout the entire supply chain have been properly mapped; the footprints of the products have been externally verified.
  2. Arla has signed off on its goal to reduce emissions for Arla organic products by 30% in 2028, compared to 2015 emissions.
  3. The goal to reduce Arla organic’s emissions has been translated into reduction plans. These are monitored in various ways, such as through Arla Climate Checks on dairy farms.
  4. Remaining greenhouse gases are offset by projects certified according to the international Verified Carbon Standard (VCS).
  5. The above points are communicated in a transparent manner on both the Arla website and on the packaging of Arla carbon neutral organic products, showing the scope of the certification: ‘from farm to fridge’.

Reduction Initiatives

To continue its progress in reducing greenhouse gas emissions, Arla continuously measures results, including on the dairy farms themselves. Extensive Arla Climate Checks are done every year on the farms to check various components: the number of animals, composition of the feed, crop yield, manure processing, energy use, milk and crops sold. The Climate Checks offer dairy farmers more insight into their carbon footprints and form the basis for sound advice regarding even more reduction possibilities. In addition to the annual Climate Checks, the dairy farmers only use green electricity on their dairy farms. The Nijkerk plant also uses climate-neutral green electricity and biogas extracted by the fermentation of organic residual waste to produce Arla organic’s products.

Offsetting Greenhouse Gases

Arla believes the fight against climate change cannot move fast enough. Despite all the reduction measures taken by the dairy cooperative, greenhouse gases are still released into the atmosphere, including methane released as cows digest grass. This cannot be solved overnight. Arla therefore chooses to fully offset Arla carbon neutral organic’s remaining emissions. They do so by investing in certified projects in East Africa, which ensure that new trees are planted, and in Indonesia and Brazil, which prevent rainforests from being cut down and set on fire.

“With the Climate Neutral Group’s certification, we give our consumers and customers the assurance that what we do and say is correct. We are also strengthening our sustainability programme, because we are going through an annual monitoring and audit process.”, says Lindy van der Veen, CSR & Communications Manager at Arla Netherlands.

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