Mole Valley Farmers (MVF) is to include a carbon footprint figure on all its dairy compound and blended feed product labels as standard from next month. It says the move, part of its Climate Positive Agriculture initiative, is an industry first.

From August 1st 2021 all conventional dairy feeds produced by the co-operative will include a carbon footprint (CFP) figure stated in kg CO2e per kg of feed, alongside the usual list of nutrients detailed on the label. This will apply to all products, whether bespoke mixes or off-the-shelf products.

The MVF carbon footprint figures will be calculated using the latest environmental impact information for individual feed ingredients from the Global Feed LCA Institute (GFLI). The company will combine these with “best estimates” for production and transportation to provide a total CFP figure for the product up to delivery onto farm. The figures will be independently audited by a specialist consultancy firm.

MVF says its Climate Positive Agriculture initiative has already seen the business develop its Precision Nutrition rationing programme to calculate the carbon footprint, methane and nitrogen output of a total dairy diet, including forages. It is also about to launch a new Climate Positive range of feeds that have been specifically formulated to have a low impact on the environment.

“The dairy industry is starting to move towards rewarding farmers for reducing their environmental impact,” advises MVF head of nutrition Dr Chris Bartram. “We want to help producers calculate their business’s carbon footprint more accurately, by providing them with the information they need about the environmental attributes of the diets they feed.

“We can then advise on where they can make environmental gains with their ruminant diets, whilst also continuing to help them hit production targets and maximise margins.”