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Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL)


16 February 2018 – The Natural Capital Impact Group (NCIG) have launched a new case study showcasing an innovative scheme with Nestlé which is encouraging UK dairy farmers to take practical measures to enhance the natural environment.

Against a backdrop of topsoil erosion and species decline across UK farmland, Nestlé is investing to protect its future milk supply, which is critical to products including Kit Kat and Nescafé. Farmers involved in the innovative scheme, featured in a new case study published by the NCIG, choose from a range of practical sustainable dairy farming interventions, identified and benchmarked by Nestlé with support from the NCIG.

“As a member of the Natural Capital Impact Group, we were in prime position to draw on the group’s research for our farmer programme,” says Andy Griffiths, Head of Environmental Sustainability, Nestlé UK and Ireland.

 The scheme has been welcomed by many farmers including Paul Barrow, who is part of the Nestlé trial. He says, “It’s a win-win, the sustainability bonus covers the investment we make in planting new hedgerows, and they protect against sediment run-off into our stream and potential disease spread as well as attracting all kinds of wildlife and nesting birds.”

Launched in 2017, Nestlé’s UK trial is a first for the global dairy industry. Nestlé now hope to replicate the scheme elsewhere as the company scales efforts to reduce its environmental risks. For CISL, the scheme offers an exciting testing ground for action-driven research that could help usher in a new era of sustainable UK dairy farming.

This is the first in a series of ‘Modelling better business’ case studies.  Underpinned by sound research, these case studies will provide examples of how large multinational companies are protecting natural capital on the ground, and the business and societal benefits this delivers. Our goal is to create compelling commercial cases that inspire companies to take action, particularly those in sectors reliant on natural capital.

The Natural Capital Impact Group (NCIG) is a global network of companies, working collaboratively, to determine how business can sustain the natural world and its resources through its strategies and operating practices, convened by the University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL).