Nestlé and Vreugdenhil Dairy Foods: towards more sustainable dairy
Vreugdenhil Dairy Foods and Nestlé combine joint know-how and financial resources towards
more sustainable dairy.
Over the past few months, 17 enthusiastic dairy farmers of the Nijkerkbased powdered milk specialist performed trial runs with feeding measures, sowing herb-rich grassland and generating renewable energy.
The objective: a 50% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 as a key step in the transition towards regenerative agriculture. In this project, called Low carbon farming, Nestlé and Vreugdenhil are supported by scientists from Wageningen University & Research. The project will be extended step by step to include another 250 dairy farmers in 2030. Regenerative agriculture is a collective name for sustainability measures in agriculture, such as improving soil and water quality, increasing biodiversity and optimising dairy farmers' revenue model. "We want to offer dairy farmers the entire package of measures," says Vreugdenhil CEO Albert de Groot. "Where possible, we will include new technologies alongside existing ones. To make an impact, regenerative agriculture requires a collective chain approach. That is why we are proud to be developing an appropriate roadmap together with our dairy farmers and Nestlé."
Typical aspects of this project are the custom approach, cooperation and knowledge sharing. "We are learning by doing and are using science-based knowledge and measures in the process. And because every farm is unique, we need customisation," explains De Groot. Nikki Adamo, CEO Nestlé Nederland: "The Netherlands is one of the main agricultural countries for Nestlé worldwide. "Based on the first successful implementations and broad enthusiasm among all parties involved, we will gradually roll out the project more broadly among another 250 dairy farmers. To make the desired impact, we will jointly invest more than 50 million euros over the next few years to realise our ambition of halving our greenhouse gas emissions by 2030.
The dairy farmers that participate in this sustainability project have been given full control. After all, farmers know what is best for their farm and can make considered choices as to which measures should be applied. Tim van Noord, dairy farmer in Hellouw: "I took over the farm from my father, who had taken it over from his father. I want my children to have a future in the company, and this requires change. Nestlé and Vreugdenhil are providing me with the finances and knowledge to complete this transition for the longer term up to 2030. I am not alone, we are in this together." The steadily growing world population comes with an increasing need for sustainable food production. Nestlé is committed to regenerative agriculture and the production of plant-based products across the globe. Regenerative agriculture is rooted in the resilience and intelligence of nature.