Dairy leads the way on carbon footprinting

Published 7 September 10

The dairy sector is once again leading the way with today's launch of the first UK sector specific guidance for calculating the carbon footprint of all dairy products.

Developed by experts in carbon footprinting from Dairy UK, DairyCo and the Carbon Trust in collaboration with major dairy processing companies, "Guidelines for the Carbon Footprinting of Dairy Products in the UK" applies the methodology of PAS 2050 to ensure that the dairy sector has a common approach and can focus on reducing emissions rather than discussing the methodology. 

The guidelines will be used by dairy processing companies to help them measure carbon emissions across their supply chain.  As well as ensuring a consistent approach to carbon footprinting in the industry, the guidelines are designed to help those involved at every stage of production to understand the importance of carbon footprint measurement and explain how it is done in a clear and accessible way.

"Dairy companies and their farm suppliers are committed to reducing the environmental impact of dairy products in the UK and this guidance document will help the sector measure, monitor, and manage carbon out of the supply chain" said Dairy UK Environment Manager, Fergus McReynolds.

 Dr. Karen Wonnacott, DairyCo Research and Development Manager, added "this work builds on the dairy industry's commitment to reducing carbon in the supply chain and will aid farmers and the whole sector in achieving the challenging targets set out in the industry's Milk Roadmap."

Euan Murray, Head of Footprinting at the Carbon Trust, said: "Dairy products such as milk, cheese and yoghurt are found in the homes and shopping baskets of most UK consumers, so by working to reduce their carbon impact we can make a real difference. Building a consistent and accurate footprint is a key step towards managing and reducing carbon emissions and we are pleased to have helped Dairy UK and DairyCo develop sector specific guidance on carbon footprinting."

Copies of the new guidelines will be available on the Dairy UK and DairyCo stands at the RABDF Dairy Event and Livestock Show from 11:30 am on Tuesday 7th September. Representatives will be available to talk about this initiative in further detail and answer questions from journalists.



The PAS 2050 Carbon Footprinting Methodology

Two years ago the Carbon Trust laid the foundations for a product footprinting methodology. Published in October 2008, the PAS 2050 standard was developed in partnership with DEFRA and the BSI, with input from stakeholders around the world. It is first international standard for companies to measure the carbon footprint of their products and services. The carbon footprint of a product or service is the total carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases emitted during its life, from production to final disposal.

For more information on the PAS 2050 methodology visit:


About Dairy UK

Dairy UK is a trade association that represents the interests of dairy farmers, producer co-ops, milk processors and doorstep deliverymen. For more information visit www.dairyUK.org.

Proud of Dairy is a Dairy UK campaign to raise the profile of the dairy industry. Are you Proud of Dairy too? If so, why not support the campaign by clicking onto www.proudofdairy.com where you can find more details.

For further information please contact Simon Bates, Communications Director at Dairy UK on: +44(0)20 7467 2648 or email sbates@dairyUK.org


About DairyCo

DairyCo's aim is to promote world class knowledge to British dairy farmers so they can profit from a sustainable future.

To achieve this DairyCo aims to: 

  • Ensure farmers have access to world class information needed to improve competitiveness, GHG reduction and productivity
  • Ensure farmers have access to direct and indirect support to help them improve their profitability through better business management
  • Ensure that dairy farming is reducing its impact on the environment
  • Ensure farmers understand the benefits of breeding and use the related tools

DairyCo is funded entirely by milk producers, via a statutory levy on all milk sold off-farm, at the rate of 0.06p per litre.  This provides an annual income of around £6.5m.

DairyCo is a division of the statutory levy board, the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board (AHDB).

For further information:

N:        Helen Fina
T:         02476 478696
E:        helen.fina@dairyco.org.uk           
W:       www.dairyco.org.uk

About The Carbon Trust

The Carbon Trust is a not-for-profit company with the mission to accelerate the move to a low carbon economy, providing specialist support to business and the public sector to help cut carbon emissions, save energy and commercialise low carbon technologies.  By stimulating low carbon action we contribute to key UK goals of lower carbon emissions, the development of low carbon businesses, increased energy security and associated jobs.

 We help to cut carbon emissions now by:

  • Providing specialist advice and finance to help organisations cut carbon
  • Setting standards for carbon reduction

 We reduce potential future carbon emissions by

  • Opening markets for low carbon technologies
  • Leading industry collaborations to commercialise technologies
  • Investing in early stage low carbon companies