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·         Dairy Farmers of America Joins Newly Launched Project Gigaton Initiative to Reduce Emissions

·         Document proper animal handling



Dairy Farmers of America Joins Newly Launched Project Gigaton Initiative to Reduce Emissions


Source - Dairy Farmers of America

via Oklahoma Farm Report - 19 Apr 2017


Today, during Walmart’s Sustainability Milestone Summit, Dairy Farmers of America (DFA) joined the retailer and other organizations in announcing our participation in a new platform, Project Gigaton, aiming to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from our operations and supply chains one gigaton by 2030. Through Project Gigaton, a network of suppliers, companies and non-governmental organizations will submit goals and plans to eliminate one gigaton of emissions, the equivalent of taking more than 211 million passengers vehicles off of U.S. roads and highways for a year. The initiative has identified energy, agriculture, waste, packaging, deforestation and product use and design as the goal areas in which to focus emissions reduction efforts.


“We are excited to work with Walmart toward its sustainability goals, and are aligned with its vision,” said David Darr, president of farm services at DFA. “Our farmer members have a strong track record of progress and stewardship and are committed to producing safe, quality and wholesome dairy products through integrity-based, sustainable practices. We have a moral obligation to feed the world in a sustainable manner and look forward to continuing the journey as technology evolves in this area.”


DFA is committing to accelerating our work in the areas of manure management, anaerobic digestion, farm management and advanced management technologies. We see our work contributing to:





Document proper animal handling


Martha Blum, Agrinews (IL)

Apr 19, 2017


ARLINGTON, Va. — The National Milk Producers Federation is expanding its program focused on assuring consumers that dairymen provide the right care for their animals.


The voluntary program named FARM, which stands for Farmers Assuring Responsible Management, was initiated in 2009 and began with an emphasis on animal care.


“We know as farmers that we take the right care of animals because it is the right thing to do,” said Emily Yeiser Stepp, director of FARM animal care. “But we needed an avenue to provide data and proof points to our consumers and customers.”


In addition to animal care, the FARM program now includes sections about antibiotic stewardship and environmental stewardship.


“The FARM program allows for one consistent, unified message from the industry,” Stepp said.


“At the end of 2016, we had 105 co-ops and proprietary processors participating in the program, and that covers 98 percent of the domestic milk supply in 49 states,” she reported. “And we had over 45,000 second-party evaluations completed by 370 trained FARM evaluators.”


Reference manual


The animal care component of the program includes a reference manual that producers are encouraged to follow.


“That gets implemented through the second-party evaluation that includes interview questions and animal observations for hygiene, locomotion, body condition, hock and knee lesions in addition to facilities and environment on the farm,” Stepp explained.


“To make sure our evaluators are doing their job, we also have a third-party evaluation process to determine that we’re hitting our marks and maintaining consistency in the program,” she said.


All dairy farms must have a veterinary client patient relationship signed on an annual basis, and each employee with animal care responsibilities must sign a cow care agreement, Stepp said...