Kiwi dairy farm owners, managers, employees and dairy farming groups are encouraged to reinforce their global reputation as leaders in innovation, sustainability and efficiency by taking part in the #WeAreDairy initiative.
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Diversey agricultural global application specialist Alison Cox says the #WeAreDairy initiative is a way to showcase the innovations and progress dairy farmers have made.

The inaugural #WeAreDairy award aims to showcase the incredible advancements being made on dairy farms and the positive impact they have on farm businesses, communities or the supply chain on a daily basis.

The award, established by Diversey’s Deosan Agriculture hygiene brand and dairy industry consultants Promar International, is open to dairy farmers across the globe and will recognise, celebrate and publicise the positive innovations, improvements and actions of the dairy community that are collectively shaping the future of the industry.

“It’s time for the industry to stand up and demonstrate the extraordinary progress we have made in the dairy sector, and the innovative ways in which farms have adapted to improve animal welfare and sustainability,” Diversey agricultural global application specialist Alison Cox says.

“We are looking for dairy applicants who are excelling through improvements to the efficiency, quality or sustainability of their business.

“We’re looking for innovation, in a simple and practical form, that can be easily transferred to other dairy farm businesses and, therefore, deliver significant sustainable advancements.

“It can be anything from savings on fuel and transport or utilities, to a new housing design that has seen improvement in animal health.”

Applications can be made by visiting the #WeAreDairy website before the end of August. Applicants are asked to fill out a form with details of their sustainable or animal welfare improvement, explain the impact it has had on their business and animals, and include an image to support their example.

Judging will take place in September, from which five finalists will be selected.

The judging panel – composed of Alison Cox, Diversey executive director of sustainability Daniel Daggett and Promar International principal consultant Matt Sheehan – will look at a number of factors, including innovative thinking, the ease of implementation, the motivation for implementation and the relative impact of the change.

The overall winner will be announced in October and receive a $10,000 prize.

To further illustrate the progress of the innovation and advancements, and promote the industry around the globe, Diversey and Promar will publish a report highlighting the impact on climate and welfare if the processes carried out by the finalists were applied by the international dairy farming community.

It is also their aim to promote all entries throughout the entry period to further showcase the exceptional efforts of the dairy community in those areas and encourage and inspire others to improve sustainability and welfare.

“For the dairy industry, we are living through a time of brilliant change and we want to celebrate the positives,” Sheehan says.

“I want to encourage the industry to get behind this initiative and promote our progress to not only the farming community but also a wider audience, including consumers.”

For more information, entry criteria or to enter, visit www.wearedairy.com

Last month, 14 of our dairy farms in Maine, as well as dozens of dairy farms across northern New England, got an unexpected and disappointing notice from Danone of North America saying that they were discontinuing their contracts with our organic dairy farmers in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont and elsewhere.

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