Arla and Danish customers partner to boost climate and biodiversity efforts
Photo - Arla Foods

Arla and Danish customers partner to boost climate and biodiversity efforts

Arla's ambitious work to reduce the climate impact from dairy takes another step forward with an expansion of partnerships to support the reduction of emissions from Arla’s farmer owners whilst also supporting customers achieve their scope 3 reduction goals. To further consolidate the results from its farmer owners, and the data-driven approach, Arla Foods launches new FarmAhead brand for its collective activities on climate reduction and protection of biodiversity.

European dairy cooperative Arla Foods is taking another significant step in reducing the climate impact of dairy farming. Today it announced that all of Arla’s 200 million kilo fresh milk pool in Danish retail- and foodservice becomes part of the company’s FarmAhead Customer Partnership programme.

The FarmAhead Customer Partnership links Arla's data-driven climate reduction efforts with customer demands for dairy products with a lower carbon footprint. The partnership allows customers in retail and foodservice to become partners on climate reduction initiatives taking place on Arla’s farmer owners’ farms and provides customers with access to data that can be used in their own ESG reporting and to support their scope 3 climate goals.

“Through our FarmAhead Customer Partnership, we are collaborating with our customers to make a difference and accelerate the green transition. Through the programme, we make our extensive data available to our customers and thereby support their climate action and ESG reporting needs. In return, we unite customers with our farmer owners to build more knowledge, reduce the carbon footprint and increase biodiversity, for generations to come,” says Peter Giørtz-Carlsen, executive vice president and chief operating officer of Arla Foods.

The program was first launched in 2023 in the UK under the “Customer Sustainabilty Programme”-name, where the first contracts with customers including Aldi, Asda and Morrisons covers more than 1 billion kilos of milk.

“The response from our customers has been exceptionally positive, reflecting a strong interest in joining forces with Arla to lead the way in the green transition. With such momentum, we are now launching our FarmAhead™ Customer Partnership programme across Arla’s further core European markets during 2024," says Peter Giørtz-Carlsen.

New brand will consolidate data-driven approach

At the same time as the announcement, Arla is consolidating its various elements of sustainability work under the name FarmAhead Technology. FarmAhead Technology consists of three parts:

• FarmAhead Check: Previously known as Climate Check, this is one of the world's largest externally validated datasets on dairy production, covering 99% of Arla's milk pool. Arla farmer owners upload data on a wide range of questions related to their farm, which is then verified. The result is a specific climate footprint per kg of milk produced, along with insights into where emissions come from and how they can be most effectively reduced.

• FarmAhead Incentive: Formerly known as the Sustainability Incentive Model, this is a point-based system based on data from FarmAhead Check. Farmers can earn points based on their activities to reduce climate impact and protect biodiversity. For each obtained point a premium of 0.03 EURcent per kilo of milk is added to the milk price the farmer receives. Up to EUR 500 million is allocated annually to motivate and accelerate efforts to reduce emissions from farms.

• FarmAhead Innovation: This focuses on exploring new technologies and refining data that can potentially be integrated into the above elements over time.

"Together with our farmer owners, we have developed and launched several groundbreaking initiatives in recent years. Now, we are bringing everything together under the FarmAhead brand to emphasize how Arla has a data-driven model that delivers concrete results. Over the last two years, we have reduced our carbon footprint by almost 1 mio. Tonnes of CO2e, says Hanne Søndergaard, executive vice president, Agriculture, Sustainability & Communication for Arla Foods.

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