Arla farmers criticize new sustainability Incentive model

From August 2023, Arla farmers who are taking action to reduce their carbon footprint will be rewarded through a new Sustainability Incentive model. But the debate on the model rages in the agricultural media ATL.

‘Unfair and unsustainable’. That is the verdict from 14 out of 17 Arla districts, which criticize their own cooperative for discriminating against farms in forest and midland areas. This and other issues are revealed in a review of Lighthouse reports and ATL.

The criticism mainly concerns that all land use apparently is considered negative for the climate, including the management of natural forests and other extensive areas.

Anna Iletorp, Dairy farmer from Orust in Bohuslän explains to ATL:

– In short, you get paid for how much land you have in relation with how much milk you produce. If you have extensive agricultural land, you get less milk per acre.

Lisa Ehde, member director of Arla responds to the criticism in another article in ATL.

– Introducing the sustainability Incentive model is a big deal in Arla. But what appears as a fact in the criticism, that a production system with extensive lands is disadvantaged, is not shown by our runs.

– It is important that the members think about the whole picture. If you only look at one parameter at a time, it’s easy to think that the best decision might be to remove 20 hectares of extensive land, but there are other parameters that weigh against it, for example land use in relation to fertilizer use. If you score high on one, it’s hard to score high on the other. The model is suitable for all farms.

Also, Gustav Kämpe – member of Arla’s Board of Directors  – defends the new sustainability compensation in an article in ATL.

Read more HERE