Landliebe launches traditional cattle feed concept to increase sustainability and authenticity
During the second half of this year, Landliebe (Germany) will be launching a completely new yet wholly traditional cattle feed concept as a major extension of its quality and origin programme. From July onwards, all Landliebe’s fresh milk, long-life milk and school milk will come from cows fed exclusively on locally produced cattle feed. Landliebe will be the first German dairy brand to introduce such a concept. The feed, which will come from Germany and its EU neighbours, will be made from crops that have always traditionally been grown by German farmers.
Preparations for the new concept are now well under way. Many of Landliebe’s dairy farmers in Nordrhein-Westfalen are keenly interested in the new scheme, as are compound feed manufacturers. “Approximately 450 dairy farmers throughout the federal state are taking part in the new initiative”, explains Cologne-based Kurt Gentges, who is responsible for contacts with the German member dairy farmers. “And they’re highly enthusiastic about the idea.” The farmers will be paid an allowance to take part in the scheme. This will provide an incentive and help them to identify with the brand. “When they switch over to the new feed, our farmers will also be given advice by specialist regional advisors”, adds Gentges.
The Landliebe milk will be collected separately from regular milk at the selected farms. It will also be treated and processed separately at the production facility in Cologne. This means that the new Landliebe milk will be constantly inspected and registered, from the production of the cattle feed to the end product that stocks the supermarket shelves.
Dairy farmers to use only locally grown feed
Landliebe’s farmers live and work in rural areas such as the Bergische Land, Sauerland and neighbouring regions. The grass and other feed they give their cows, such as corn and grain, is all locally grown. “The new feed concept reflects Landliebe’s commitment to sustainability, natural origin feeds and a healthy nutrition”, says Gentges. The brand reflects authentic, traditional values and a close bond with the countryside. Products are naturally, healthily and sustainably produced.
The concentrates that dairy farmers use as feed supplements must also be produced in accordance with the new Landliebe specifications. This means that they may only contain inputs that come from Germany or the European Union. The basic ration for cows (meadow grass, feed crops, grass and corn-based silage) must also be home-grown. The other feed components required by the cow will be produced either in the EU or in Germany, and will not be imported from overseas. “Traditional local cattle feed generally satisfies all the cow’s needs”, asserts Gentges. “It won’t reduce milk production or have any adverse effects on the animal’s health.”
The specifications governing the new feed concept have been agreed with the dairy farmers in a supplementary contract to the milk supply system. Inspection of the additional feed purchased and ensuring that it is separately stored will be a key part of this agreement. The Landliebe feed concept will also have other positive effects. For example, it will replace imported soy pellets with raw materials from the EU. Landliebe will thus be helping to protect valuable and ecologically vital natural landscapes in South America, where the coverage of tropical rainforests in the Amazon Basin is being visibly reduced by the systematic cultivation of soy.
Underlining the authentic and indigenous nature of locally grown feed
“By giving our cows indigenous, traditionally grown feed, we are profiling ourselves even more distinctly as one of the most popular, leading dairy brands”, says Gentges. The new feed concept will underline the authentic and indigenous nature of the Landliebe brand. It will also take account of consumer demand, since product origin, animal welfare and environmental impact are becoming increasingly important considerations for consumers.
Landliebe is one of the biggest-selling daily fresh milk brands in Germany. Landliebe stands for healthy enjoyment and for the highest quality milk with no artificial additives, preservatives or food gelatines. Typical Landliebe properties such as ‘natural’ and ‘close to consumers’ again come to the fore in the delicious taste that accompanies milk with a natural fat content. And, thanks to Landliebe school milk, many German children are enjoying a healthy, nutritious diet.