Pasture grazing: cows in meadows
A cow grazing in the meadow is part of the traditional Dutch landscape and highly appreciated by the people. FrieslandCampina encourages member dairy farmers in the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany to put their cows and young cattle out into the meadows. FrieslandCampina promotes this by rewarding its member dairy farmers for pasture grazing when their dairy cows graze in the meadows at least 120 days per year for a minimum of six hours per day. For this, the member dairy farmers receive an pasture grazing premium of gross 1.50 euros per 100 kg milk. Partly pasture grazing is rewarded by FrieslandCampina with 0.46 euros per 100 kg milk. In order to be eligible for this, member dairy farmers must put a minimum of 25 percent of their cattle present on the farm out in the meadows for at least 120 days a year for a minimum of six hours per day.
in the meadows for at least 120 days per year for a minimum of six hours per day
Pasture grazing in 2017
The percentage of dairy farms in the Netherlands that had their cows graze in the meadows slightly increased to 79.4 in 2017 (78.2 percent in 2016 and 77.9 percent in 2015). This is the second year in a row that the percentage dairy farms that practice pasture grazing has increased.
By encouraging pasture grazing, FrieslandCampina wants to achieve the target in this area: maintaining the 2012 level in 2020 (= 81.2 percent). In 2014, the pasture grazing percentage among our member dairy farmers was 77.2 percent, in 2015 it was 77.9 percent, in 2016 it was 78.2 percent and in 2017 it was 79.4 percent.
Range of meadow milk products
FrieslandCampina carries an extensive range of dairy products made from meadow milk. In this way, the company wants to enable consumers to make a conscious choice for meadow milk products and thus contribute towards the preservation of cows in the Dutch countryside.
Stichting Weidegang (Outdoor Grazing Foundation, Dutch website) was set up to promote the visibility of cows in the Dutch countryside. The foundation provides member dairy farmers with advice on pasture grazing. To encourage pasture grazing, farmers who meet certain conditions also receive a special pasture grazing premium. FrieslandCampina is one of the initiators of Stichting Weidegang.
Cows happily outside at the opening of the farmer seasonFestive first outdoor grazing at the farm of farmer Niels in Leusden, the Netherlands
314 FrieslandCampina dairy farmers switch to outdoor grazing314 member dairy farmers of FrieslandCampina chose for putting their cows out into the meadows by switching to outdoor grazing this year.