Arla Foods to Incentivise Dairy Farmers Who Switch to GM-Free Feed

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16 May 2016 --- Arla Foods is to offer a bonus scheme for dairy farmers who switch to GM-free feed.

Producers will be paid $1.13 a liter to cover the extra costs.

The program will start in Germany, where Arla wants to source a billion liters for retailers that have asked for the change.

The Danish cooperative has made the decision on commercial and not ethical grounds.

Arla said in Germany "retailers are increasingly demanding dairy products from cows which have been fed GM free feed and are willing to pay a price premium".

Arla chairman Åke Hantoft said: “We own the biggest organic milk pool in the world, for which the feed is by default GM free. Our Swedish farmers have always used GM free feed."

"This means that around 20 per cent of Arla’s milk pool already meets this market demand. There is commercial potential in this that we can capture and build on immediately by attracting more farmers who are willing to convert to GM free feed."

“We welcome innovative solutions and new technology, which can improve farming and help feed the world’s growing population in a sustainable manner. We are not closing a door on GM and we will continue to monitor the scientific research into the pros and cons of GM going forward.”

Peter Tudor, Arla chief executive, said: "Currently, the demand comes from Germany, where we will immediately look into the practical issues such as logistics, separated productions etc.”

“As the commercial opportunities arise in other markets, we will invite farmers to participate and gradually take on more farmers. But we still need to explore exactly how we can make this happen and how fast.

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