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New report aims to encourage more sustainable practices in the dairy sector

last modified Oct 06, 2016 12:29 PM
25 January 2016 – The importance of natural resource security for dairy production was highlighted today at an event at the House of Lords, on the occasion of the launch of a new report on natural capital and the dairy sector.

Produced jointly by the Natural Capital Leaders Platform, hosted by the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadersip, and leading companies including Anglian Water, Glanbia, Nestlé, Lactalis McLelland, Volac and Yara, the report Commercial gains from addressing natural capital challenges in the dairy sector shows that many current practices in the dairy industry are depleting the very natural capital on which the sector depends by impacting water supplies, depleting biodiversity and degrading soils.

The House of Lords event at which the report was launched was chaired by Lord Curry of Kirkharle and speakers included George Eustice MP, Minister of State at the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and Duncan Pollard, AVP Stakeholders Engagement in Sustainability at Nestlé S.A.

The panelists discussed the practical interventions presented in the report which, if adopted at scale, could help halt the degradation of water, soil and biodiversity and deliver benefits to dairy farmers and the public.

Martin Roberts, Director for Natural Capital at the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership, who coordinated the report, said:

“This is a very exciting first step in transforming a list of industry environmental commitments into a handful of practical measures that everyone can get behind to reverse declines in the quality of water, soil and biodiversity and revitalise our dairy industry.”

This report work is particularly timely as the UK Government is developing two long-term approaches with interdependent goals: a 25-year food and farming plan to "encourage enterprise and boost productivity"; and a similar 25-year natural capital plan which aims to “identify our most important and threatened environmental assets, and focus policies on delivering better environmental outcomes.”

The Natural Capital Leaders Platform’s dairy report offers useful insights into how commercial gains can be made by adopting practices that reverse declines in the natural capital on which the industry depends.

Read the report: ‘Commercial gains from addressing natural capital challenges in the dairy sector’

Contact

Martin Roberts
Director, Natural Capital
 

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