For UK dairy sector, cost reduction includes the environment

The UK’s dairy sector has added a new dimension to cost reduction and has, in…...

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The UK’s dairy sector has added a new dimension to cost reduction and has, in turn, reduced the industry’s environmental cost in terms of pollution.

Dairy UK, the trade association for the British dairy supply chain, has announced a major decrease in its environmental footprint over the last decade.

Speaking this week to a meeting of MPs and representatives from the sector, Dairy UK Chairman Paul Vernon said that the British dairy industry had made “outstanding progress.” He also announced new proposals to ensure that the UK’s dairy supply chain “continued to be world-leading in environmental sustainability.”

A recently published, entitled UK Dairy Roadmap 2018, chronicles the industry’s commitment to the environment over the last decade, reveals that greenhouse gas emissions linked to milk production have been slashed by almost a quarter (24%) since 2008.

Over the same period, the proportion of milk containers made from the thermoplastic HDPE that are now recycled has climbed to 85%, while the amount of waste passed on to landfill sites has fallen from 35% to 4%.

In addition to this, the industry has already attained three of its dairy producers’ targets for 2020, which are:

15% enhancement of energy efficiency
20% fall in the amount of water brought on site
20% reduction in “chemical oxygen demand” in released waste

Working to the same deadline of 2020, the sector also plans to reduce its production of carbon at processing sites, limit the amount of water brought on site, and reduce food waste by 30%.

The country’s dairy producers are building other objectives into supply chain management, including action to enhance biodiversity, eliminate single-use plastic by improving the design of packaging, and devising and implementing a new industry standard for training in environmental sustainability.

Commenting, the Minister of State for Agriculture, George Eustace, said: “The dairy industry has made great strides in reducing its environmental footprint and it is great to see their ongoing progress to further increase the sustainability of this vital industry.”

Supply relationship management undoubtedly includes environmental cost reduction for the dairy sector and it will be essential for procurement staff to take a leading role in sourcing savings at every stage of the supply chain to ensure this transformation.

Steve Trainor

Steve has over 28 years of success as CPO, MD and Procurement BPO leader in a range of industries. Steve is COO at Odesma, responsible for Odesma’s delivery capability & infrastructure.

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