Finnish dairy firm Valio has introduced a new tool - Carbo Farm calculator - to help farmers measure carbon emissions in their farms.
The tool will help dairy farmers in reducing their carbon footprint by identifying the sources contributing to carbon emissions and taking appropriate action.
Carbo Farm calculator uses the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) methodology and data from Valio’s scientific work that started as animal nutrition research 10 years ago, Valio said.
The methodology has been certified by the Carbon Trust, a global climate and sustainability group that helps businesses, governments, and organisations to reduce carbon emissions.
'Commitment To Minimising Emissions'
Associate director of Carbon Trust, John Newton, said, "It is great to see Valio create this carbon calculator to help their farmers drive down their carbon emissions. It demonstrates the company’s commitment to minimising its emissions and we are pleased to have certified its calculator."
The dairy company aims to introduce the tool in all its dairy farms in the next five years.
Aleksi Astaptsev, scientist and developer of the calculation model at Valio, commented, "We have scheduled a training roadshow for dairy farms and we are providing them with online support, too. The calculator is easy to use and the farmers already have most of the data at hand.
"I estimate that the average farm can lower its emissions by 30% by 2025. At the same time, we are of course working to reduce emissions from Valio’s factories, transportation, and packaging."
The company calculated the carbon footprint of the Hilliaho dairy farm in Sievi in western Finland while developing the calculator.
So far, the dairy company has collected data from approximately 100 farms.
Owner of the Hilliaho dairy farm, Rami Rauhala, said, "Climate-smart milk production is also resource-efficient, i.e. it makes good sense economically. Most of the fields on our farm are either grass silage or grazing pastures. We have also over-seeded to make the vegetation as thick as possible. In our area, the significance of reparcelling is also big.
"Parcels that have over time become fragmented have been reparcelled into feasible parcels among landowners. When fields are closer to the farm centre, tractors use less fuel. It has been great to notice that milk producers are part of the solution to climate change. I believe that a growing share of consumers value our work as environmentally sustainable food producers."
Valio also added that it will continue to develop the carbon footprint calculator tool to include the carbon balance of the soil in measuring emissions.
"Carbon binding in grass fields and emissions from farming peat fields should also be included in the calculations to get a more accurate picture of a food’s carbon footprint. Another area of development is combining the nutritional values of different foods with their carbon footprints," Astaptsev explained.
© 2020 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Dayeeta Das. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.