More than fifty food chain players, including FrieslandCampina, have joined forces to keep cows in the meadow. On Monday, 18 June 2012, they signed the Outdoor Grazing Covenant at a dairy farm in Weesp (the Netherlands). This is the first time that so many players have voiced their support for outdoor grazing at dairy farms.
The signatories to the Outdoor Grazing Covenant want to offer as much outdoor grazing as possible and believe that they have a joint responsibility to retain at least the current level of dairy farms with outdoor grazing. All players are committed to this goal based on their individual roles. The cow is synonymous with the Dutch landscape and the Dutch people attach great value to seeing cows in the field. Outdoor grazing contributes to the natural behaviour of cows.
In addition to FrieslandCampina, the signatories include other dairy businesses, dairy farming organisations, individuals with access to the farm, retail, cheese retailers, social organisations, site-managing organisations, government, education and science. Individuals with access to the farm include feed suppliers, banks, accountants, vets and breeders.
The initiative for the covenant was taken by the Sustainable Dairy Chain, a joint venture of the Dutch Dairy Organisation and the Dutch Federation of Agricultural and Horticultural Organisations. The covenant is open to all players who want to sign up to the aims of the signatories.