Northern Ireland: milk delivery achieves new record

In Northern Ireland in 2020 dairy farms delivered 2446.41 million litres milk which was 2.4 percent more than in 2019 and a new record. To compare: in 2005 Northern Irish dairy farms delivered 1866 million litres milk according to the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs

Denmark: study on hoof trimming and calving date

A Danish study of the universities or Arhus and Copenhagen shows that cow of which the hoofs have been trimmed four weeks before the expected calving date have a 2.4 percent higher change on an abortion than cows of which the hoofs have been trimmed eight weeks before the expected calving date.

Finland: Valio pays sustainability bonus

In Finland from the beginning of 2021, all 4300 member dairy farms of the biggest dairy cooperative Valio commit to Valio’s sustainability criteria. Every dairy farm supplying milk to Valio is now paid a sustainability bonus of two cents per litre. In order to receive the bonus, the farm must practice preventive animal healthcare and systematic monitoring of animal welfare. Since 2018 Valio has paid a sustainability bonus to those dairy farms committed to taking voluntary actions to improve animal welfare. The sustainability programme requires farms to take measures to improve the welfare of cows beyond what is required by the Animal Welfare Act. A veterinarian makes a healthcare visit to the farm at least once a year to assess the animal welfare and practices at the farm, and to set goals for the farm for the upcoming year. The goals and corrective measures are recorded in Naseva, the Centralised Health Care Register for Finnish Cattle Herds. Other requirements for receiving the sustainability bonus include regular hoof treatment, and the use of anaesthetics, sedation and pain relief during disbudding, i.e. the removal of a calf’s horn buds. The sustainability criteria also require that any new barns built at the dairy farm must be freestall barns, which allow the cows to move about freely. Valio’s focus will be on increasing grazing and year-round outdoor activity of cows. Currently, grazing of one or more animal groups occurs at some 70 per cent of the farms. Also Valio will continue efforts to reduce climate emissions from milk production with many farm-specific measures, like carbon farming and biogas production from cattle manure.

Finland: Arla calculated the carbon footprint of all its Finnish dairy farms

In Finland the Denmark headquartered dairy cooperative Arla has calculated the carbon footprint of all Finnish dairy farms delivering milk to Arla in Finland. According to Climate Check calculations on farms, the average carbon footprint of farms is 1.03 kilogram CO2 equivalent per kilogram milk. It is below the Finnish average of 2019, which according to Natural Resources Institut Finland is 1.10 kg CO2 equivalent. It is also well below the global average of 2.5 kg CO2 equivalent per kilogram milk. Arlas goal is to reduce the carbon footprint of dairy farms with 30 percent by 2025. Arla Finland has 447 member dairy farms producing 217 million litres of milk per year.

European Dairy Association: EDA asked president Biden to lift the import duties on European dairy products

The European Dairy Association EDA has asked the new American president Biden to lift the import duties on European dairy products. The USA Trump government started with extra import duties on EU dairy products because of the EU gives subsidies to Airbus.

Europe: new regulations for organic dairy farmers in 2022

In Europe in 2022 organic dairy farmers will face new regulations. Among others the convert period for land will be extended to two years. Starting 2023 70 percent instead of the current 60 percent of the feed has to have a ‘regional’ origin. However: the whole EU is seen as regional. For milk powder and milk replacers it is no longer allowed that they contain chemical compositions or vegetable compositions. Buying regular cattle to add to the herd is only allowed when there is no organic cattle available. This has to be proven by a database. Only for individual animals for specific individual reasons a permit is possible to dehorn.

Germany: ife – data

In Germany in January 2021 compared to December 2020 the raw material or compound value of milk at farm decreased 0.4 eurocent to 31.3 eurocent per kilogram milk with 4.0 percent fat and 3.4 percent protein (exclusive VAT). This is 4.9 eurocent less than in the same month last year.
The highest future price of milk for the next 18 months on the Kieler Börsenmilchwert European Energy Exchange is the price for July 2022 at 35.5 eurocent. The lowest future price is the price for May 2021 at 34.0 eurocent.

Germany: percentage of cattle housed in free walking barns

In Germany in 2020 was 83 percent of the cattle (mainly dairy cattle) housed in free walking barns. This was 8 percent more than ten years earlier. Ten percent of the cattle was housed in tightened barns. Of this farms 52 percent gave their cattle entrance to pasture.

Belgium: Micobel – room for extra milk

The Belgian biggest dairy cooperative Milcobel has withdrawn the announced rule that farmers that supply more milk than in 2020 have to pay a solvability levy of 7.50 euro per 100 kilogram extra milk. Because a number of farms left the cooperative Milcobel has got more room for (extra) milk. Milcobel got last five years 35 percent more milk from members which resulted in annual 1.8 billion (10*9) kilogram milk.

The Netherlands: RoyalFrieslandCampina – surplus of PlanetProof milk

In Holland the dairy cooperative RoyalFrieslandCampna has announced that it will cut in the number of farms that produce PlanetProof milk. PlanetProof milk meets strict requirements for animals, nature and climate and farms receive an extra payment for the milk. In October 2020 RFC announced that it would offer milk that is produced under the conditions of On the Way to PlanetProof‘ directly from the farm to other dairies. In this way RFC would respond to the increasing market demand for milk that meets strict requirements for animals, nature and climate, RFC stated. RFC did not have space for more Planet Proof milk from member farms. However: RFC its member dairy farmers have growing interest to produce more sustainable milk. Now about 700 RFC member farms are participating under the independent ‚On the Way to PlanetProof‘ label. Because of a surplus of PlanetProof milk produced by RFC members now RFC has announced that it will cut in the volume and the number of farms that produce PlanetProof milk.

The Netherlands: average somatic cell count in 2020

In Holland in 2020 the average somatic cell count of delivered cow milk was 182000 cells per millilitre. In 2019 this was 176000. In 2020 had 0.5 percent of the dairy farms a somatic cell count of more than 400000. The average mean bacterial count was 13400 cfu/ml (2019: 10400 cfu/ml) and the average geometric mean bacterial count was 11200 cfu/ml (2019: 10800 cfu/ml). In 2020 the average urea content of milk was 21.6 milligrams per 100 kilogram milk. In the previous seven years it varied between 22.2 and 23.1.