EUROPE’s largest dairy co-operative, Arla Foods, has today announced a major commitment towards tackling climate change by 2050. The company, owned by 10,300 farmers across the UK, Germany, Denmark, Sweden, Finland, the Netherlands, and Belgium, has stated that by 2050, it will:

be carbon net zero

balance nitrogen and phosphorus cycles to support clean water systems

be more closely aligned with nature to further increase biodiversity across Britain’s countryside.

These new targets come after the co-operative has shown that business growth can be achieved without environmental impact. They have previously established the world’s first carbon net zero milk processing facility, and have reduced CO2 emissions by 22% across production and packaging, while on farms, CO2 emissions per kilo of milk have reduced by 24% since 1990.

Arla Foods UK Managing Director Ash Amirahmadi comments: “One of the greatest challenges facing us all is providing natural, nutritious food for a growing population whilst reducing our collective impact on the world around us. Arla has already shown this is possible and the new ambitions announced today will ensure Arla’s farmers, production sites and products continue to play their part in developing a sustainable world for everyone.”

Whilst the targets are ambitious and will require radical changes across its business in the decades to come, Arla believes they are possible given the rapid pace of change in technology and ever-increasing on farm efficiencies.

Arla farmer owner Jonathan Sharp comments, “No one feels the effects of varying weather patterns more than farmers, it has a direct impact on the animals we care for, the food we produce and the money we make. We’ve taken some big steps at Arla, but we can’t take our feet off the pedal. Every business and individual in every walk of life will need to think about their impact on the world in the years to come.”