Bel Brands USA and Dairy Farmers of America Announce Sustainable Milk Cooling Pilot Results and Plans for a New Initiative Supporting the Next Generation of U.S. Dairy Farmers
Milk cooling program resulted in an overall reduction in greenhouse gas emissions while increasing the production of milk
CHICAGO, July 19, 2022 /PRNewswire/ -- Bel Brands USA and Dairy Farmers of America (DFA) – a national dairy cooperative of farm families – are proud to announce the results of their sustainable milk cooling pilot program launched last year. With the changing climate impacting everything from crop production to animal health, it is more important than ever to invest in innovative new ways to improve on-farm sustainability practices and reduce farms' environmental footprint.
Last year, Bel Brands and DFA partnered to support the adoption of energy-efficient and cost-effective on-farm milk cooling methods. This included new natural well water and forced air barn cooling systems installed on a DFA-member dairy farm in Iowa that supplies milk to Bel Brands.
Over the 12 months, the use of these cooling methods resulted in a 6% reduction in electricity used on the dairy, while milk production increased 4%. Moreover, the addition of new sand bedding on the dairy also enabled farmers to spend less time on their tractors. This led to a reduction of greenhouse gas emissions (GHG), as CO2e were reduced by 58 tons during this time. These findings are important to informing future best standards for dairy farming, especially during seasonal spikes in energy use.
"At Bel Brands, we have been improving our practices in an effort to be a better steward of the environment and a positive force in the communities we serve," said Jean Michel Dos Remedios, Sourcing & Supplier Development Senior Director, Bel Brands USA. "Our work with Dairy Farmers of America is the latest example of our commitment."
The first year of the program showed that the use of energy efficient methods, like natural well water systems and barn cooling methods, are important for reducing GHG on dairy farms while also increasing milk production.
To build on the success of this program, Bel and DFA are pleased to extend their partnership to a new program intent on supporting the next generation of U.S. dairy farmers. Under the new pilot, Bel will supply a small DFA-member dairy farm in South Dakota with equipment normally thought only to be useful on a larger dairy. The purpose being to test the viability of the equipment on smaller dairy farms to promote cost-effective and sustainable practices that can be replicated on other U.S. dairy farms in the future.
"Sustainability has been important to our farm families long before it was a buzzword, as taking care of their animals and the land is their future and livelihood," says Hansel New, director of sustainability programs at DFA. "Partners, like Bel Brands, are helping bring technologies to our farms to help reduce their environmental footprint and climate impact."
For more details about Bel Brands USA and their commitment to sustainable farming visit https://www.belbrandsusa.com/about/care-every-portion/.
About Bel Brands USA
Bel Brands USA Inc., a subsidiary of Bel Group. Headquartered in Paris, Bel wants to promote healthier, responsible and accessible food for all consumers worldwide. Bel is a major player in the healthy snack market. Bel produces more than thirty local and international brands that are sold in more than 130 countries around the globe. In addition to The Laughing Cow®, other USA favorites include Boursin®, Babybel® and popular cheese spreads marketing under Kaukauna®, Merkts® and Price*s® labels. Bel Brands delivers fun snacks to over 400 million consumers globally. www.belbrandsusa.com
About Dairy Farmers of America
Dairy Farmers of America is a national, farmer-owned dairy cooperative focusing on quality, innovation and the future of family dairies. While supporting and serving more than 11,500 family farm-owners, DFA manufactures a variety of dairy products, including fluid milk, cheese, butter, ice cream, dairy ingredients and more that connect our Cooperative's family farms to family tables with regional brands such as Alta Dena, Meadow Gold, Friendly's Ice Cream, Borden® Cheese, Plugra® Premium Butter and Kemps® to name a few. On a global scale, we work with some of the world's largest food companies to develop ingredients their customers are craving, while staying committed to social responsibility and ethical farming. For more information, please visit dfamilk.com.
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SOURCE Bel Brands USA