Knowledge for better food systems

Showing results for: Dairy and alternatives

A dairy product is food derived from the milk of mammals. The main animals used for milk production are most often cows, but in some countries goats, sheep, water buffaloes, yaks, horses and camels are also used. While dairy is used regularly Europe, the Middle East, South and Central Asia, East Asian and Southeast Asian cuisines avoids it. Dairy products include butter, cream and fermented milk products such as cheese, yogurt, kefir. Dairy contains significant amounts of cholesterol and saturated fat, although with the exception of butter. Non-animal alternatives to standard dairy products may be made from soya, rice, oats, almond and coconut. Dairy production is resource-and GHG-intensive (dairy producing animals are ruminants) and give rise to the same environmental concerns that are associated with meat consumption.

3 December 2014

The consumption of milk is regarded as a classic example of gene-culture evolution. Archaeologists and geneticists have been puzzling about where and why people have been drinking milk since it was revealed that the mutations which enable adults to drink milk are under the strongest selection of any in the human genome. Co-author Dr Christina Warinner, from the Department of Anthropology, University of Oklahoma, said: "The study has far-reaching implications for understanding the relationship between human diet and evolution.

5 September 2014

The International Dairy Federation (IDF), the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO), and the IFCN Dairy Research Network (IFCN) have collaborated on an extensive study on international dairy feeding systems to explore how differences within these systems for dairy cows, water buffaloes, sheep, and goats and between large and smallholders can affect a range of issues - from the nutritional content of the milk to the level of GHG emissions involved in the production process. Each of the three organizations had differing stakes in the research. 

30 July 2014

This video presentation on the topic Elements of a Regional Dairy Strategy for Asia and the Pacific, features Vinod Ahuja, Livestock Policy Officer at FAO Regional Office for Asia and the Pacific.

22 July 2014

The Animal Health & GHG Emissions Intensity Network is a UK-led initiative of the Livestock Research Group of the Global Research Alliance on Agricultural Greenhouse Gases (GRA).  It aims to bring researchers from across the world together to investigate links and synergies between efforts to reduce livestock disease and reduce the intensity of livestock related GHG emissions. The network’s first workshop was held in Dublin on the 25th March 2014.

25 April 2014

This report quantifies how much our food choices affect pollutant nitrogen emissions, climate change and land use across Europe.

9 April 2014

This open access article from Chalmers University, Sweden, argues that unless we reduce our consumption of meat and dairy, world temperatures will continue to rise and we will be unable to meet the goal of keeping global temperatures from rising more than 2˚C.

27 February 2014

Brighter Green has released a policy paper exploring the growth of industrial dairy systems in India, China, and countries of Southeast Asia. It explores the trend toward increased dairy consumption and production and argues that the growth of industrial systems results in severe consequences for the environment, public health, animal welfare, and rural economies. The report examines systemic changes in Asia while also providing country-specific case study analyses of Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Thailand, and Vietnam.

22 January 2014

The Meat Atlas, produced by the Heinrich Böll Foundation and Friends of the Earth, examines the many aspects of the global meat system and aims to add to the debate on the need for better, safer and more sustainable food and farming. It presents a global perspective on the impacts of industrial meat and dairy production and illustrates its negative impacts on society and the environment. The report also describes possible solutions at both individual and political level.

5 December 2013

Food and Agricultural Organization (FAO) has published a new book focusing on the role of dairy products in improving nutrition in developing countries.

5 September 2013

This study entitled: “Dairy products and the risk of type 2 diabetes: a systematic review and dose-response meta-analysis of cohort studies” takes another look at the evidence on the association between intake of dairy products and the risk of type 2 diabetes.

 

18 December 2012

A lifecycle assessment study, carried out by PE International, measured the greenhouse gas emissions emitted from the production of a number of dairy products in Australia to identify the industry’s overall carbon footprint.  An industry cross section of primary data has been analysed from 140 farms across Australia.

26 November 2012

Russian authorities are considering a proposal put forward by the National Union of Consumers’ Rights Protection, which would tax high-fat products, as well as the use of antibiotics in meat production. The tax rate proposed is 10-20% for meat and dairy products with high cholesterol content. Russian authorities have reacted favourably to the proposed initiative, but there is fear that immediate adoption of the initiative could push meat prices to unpredictable levels, driving some manufacturers out of business.

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