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HomeDairy BlogsU.S. dairy took the stage at COP27 as a climate-smart resolution to...

U.S. dairy took the stage at COP27 as a climate-smart resolution to feed the world

USDEC and DMI showcased U.S. dairy’s contributions to international local weather and meals safety targets and the work that lies forward.  

Animal agriculture, together with dairy, is beneath the microscope globally and infrequently topic to selections made by individuals who have by no means been on a dairy farm or in a dairy processing plant. That’s why the U.S. Dairy Export Council (USDEC) felt it was so essential to have interaction with international policymakers, allied agricultural organizations and, notably, teams which have been essential of dairy finally month’s UN Local weather Change Convention (COP27) in Sharm el-Sheikh, Egypt.

COP27 introduced collectively greater than 40,000 individuals to collaborate on local weather options, and U.S. dairy was within the thick of it. USDEC President and CEO Krysta Harden and Dairy Administration Inc. (DMI) Chair Marilyn Hershey co-led a high-level U.S. delegation to spotlight U.S. dairy’s essential contributions to international local weather and meals safety targets.

“At this pivotal second for agriculture and local weather, USDEC was honored to contribute to the worldwide dialog on sustainability generated by COP,” mentioned Harden. “Extra importantly, COP27 is the proper platform to share our bold commitments, have a good time progress and realistically talk the onerous work that continues to be to safe U.S. dairy’s essential function in a extra sustainable international meals system.”

All through the convention, the U.S. dairy delegation collectively participated in panels, program discussions and bilateral conferences with different organizations lively at COP. This text offers a one-stop roundup of what U.S. dairy completed at COP27 and why. It features a sampling of social media messages and pictures posted by USDEC in the course of the Nov. 6-18 international gathering.

IICA Pavilion: heart of dairy exercise
USDEC was a significant contributor to the first-ever Sustainable Agriculture of the Americas Pavilion hosted by the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA). This chance was a pure outgrowth of USDEC’s robust partnership with IICA specializing in supporting science-based meals requirements and selling the essential function of dairy in sustainable meals techniques—essential themes that USDEC is dedicated to bringing to the COP discussion board.

COP27 is the newest in USDEC’s ongoing efforts to have interaction with the voices who’re enjoying a significant function in shaping international insurance policies to mitigate the challenges of local weather change and to boost U.S. dairy’s profile as a dedicated associate. It builds on USDEC work with the United Nations companies just like the UN Meals and Agricultural Group (FAO) and UN Atmosphere Programme (UNEP) and on DMI’s efforts domestically, strengthening relationships, fostering goodwill and enhancing U.S. dairy’s status by showcasing the trade’s dedication to sustainability and environmental stewardship.

IICA’s pavilion was the middle of dairy exercise within the official “Blue Zone,” with a whole bunch visiting the placement all through every day. As well as, it served as the point of interest for producers, agriculture consultants, lecturers, dairy trade leaders, provide chain companions and senior authorities representatives to handle COP27 negotiators and influential stakeholders.

USDEC convenes dairy panel
Amongst different programming, USDEC convened the panel, “Local weather Sensible and Sustainable Dairy Manufacturing,” on the IICA Pavilion, to extend consciousness of the local weather actions, sustainable initiatives and progress made by the dairy sector at international, regional and nationwide ranges.

That includes U.S. dairy’s expertise, the panel highlighted the methods the dairy sector globally is working to cut back emissions, contribute to GHG mitigation and discover alternatives for enhancing productiveness by adopting practices and applied sciences that may have a significant impression on the sector’s environmental footprint.

Harden moderated the panel, which included audio system Hershey; Donald Moore, govt director of International Dairy Platform (GDP); Caroline Emond, director normal of the Worldwide Dairy Federation (IDF); and Cecilia Jones, a coordinator with Uruguay’s Nationwide Institute of Agricultural Analysis. As well as, the Pan American Dairy Federation (FEPALE) supplied movies of sustainability work its members are conducting in Chile and Uruguay to implement options for his or her distinctive manufacturing techniques and geographies. USDEC has a long-standing relationship with FEPALE, working collectively on quite a few points impacting the dairy trade, dairy consumption and international commerce, with an growing concentrate on sustainability within the face of worldwide commerce challenges just like the EU Farm to Fork technique.

Hershey talks dairy with Vilsack
At a separate panel placed on by the U.S. Division of Agriculture (USDA), DMI Chair Hershey highlighted U.S. dairy climate-smart initiatives to USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack and different U.S. agricultural leaders.

Vilsack supplied updates on main U.S. sustainability applications impacting dairy.

  • USDA added $300 million to its preliminary $2.8 billion funding in 70 pilot initiatives from the U.S. Partnerships for Local weather-Sensible Commodities. Among the many first-round funding was $400 million for 9 dairy-focused initiatives to assist develop markets for climate-smart dairy commodities and assist the dairy sector extra successfully monitor, confirm and report greenhouse gasoline discount advantages. The extra $300 million is earmarked for brand new initiatives aimed toward small and underserved producers.
  • The Agricultural Innovation Mission for Local weather (AIM for Local weather), which was launched by the U.S. and UAE along side COP26 in 2021, has earned backing by greater than 60 nations and practically 250 multi-national organizations and corporations, together with USDEC. (USDEC is an official AIM for Local weather “data associate.”) This system helps sustainability progress in agriculture to make it a part of the sustainability resolution, whereas constructing resiliency and offering modern instruments, funding and different sources for producers.
  • Pathways to Dairy Internet Zero rolled out previous to COP26 final yr. Created by International Dairy Platform (GDP) and, with the backing of USDEC and different companions such because the UN FAO and the U.S. State Division, Pathways seeks to cut back the environmental impression of the sector as an entire.

The Pathways initiative is a crucial effort that exhibits the world that the worldwide dairy trade is critical about addressing environmental impression whereas doubling down on the vital function that dairy has in the way forward for the worldwide meals system.

“At a time when many detractors are in search of methods to marginalize the function of dairy, it is a essential initiative on which the trade should stand collectively on a pre-competitive foundation,” mentioned Harden.

Networking reception
Harden additionally hosted a USDEC/IICA reception and dinner that drew near 100 attendees from 14 nations. The friends included a number of ministerial and ambassador-level officers, a former UN Secretary-Basic and representatives from teams typically essential of the environmental impression of dairy and skeptical of the dietary worth of animal-sourced meals.

Representatives from USDA, main international organizations (corresponding to meals and agriculture firms JBS Meals, Corteva and FMC Corp.), food-focused nonprofits like EAT, and environmental teams just like the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and the Nature Conservancy had been readily available for the networking occasion. Shows in the course of the dinner highlighted applications demonstrating agriculture’s energy as a local weather resolution by way of innovation, adaptation and productiveness progress, together with the U.S.-led Sustainable Productiveness Development Coalition (SPG Coalition) and Virginia Tech’s International Agricultural Productiveness Initiative.

Invoice Hohenstein, director of USDA’s Workplace of Power and Environmental Coverage, outlined the SPG Coalition, which was shaped with USDEC’s help on the UN Meals Techniques Summit in 2021.

The SPG Coalition goals to speed up the transition to extra sustainable meals techniques utilizing a holistic strategy to productiveness progress—a key theme USDEC helps—that considers impacts and tradeoffs amongst a number of targets, together with meals safety and diet, meals security, meals affordability, farmer incomes, animal welfare, biodiversity, water high quality, local weather change mitigation and adaptation, and different elements. The SPG Coalition created an influential group of like-minded organizations and nations with which USDEC is working to make sure that productiveness progress—important for U.S. dairy to realize its personal environmental targets—options prominently in international dialogues like COP. Productiveness progress has been an vital rallying cry to defend trendy U.S. agricultural practices at COP in opposition to ideologically pushed critics favoring agroecological approaches corresponding to these embodied within the EU Farm-to-Fork Initiative.

Influencing minds
A significant aim of USDEC’s presence at COP was participating with influential teams lively within the discussion board who’re skeptical of U.S. dairy’s function in a sustainable meals system and infrequently advocate options supporting native manufacturing on the expense of worldwide commerce. A number of engagement breakthroughs had been achieved by way of bilateral conferences, notably with international well being and meals safety teams, like EAT and the FAIRR Initiative.

“We felt that we would have liked to be at COP27 as a corporation to supply information, to appropriate some misconceptions, to take part,” mentioned Harden. “We needed to construct stronger relationships and strengthen U.S. dairy credibility with these teams we’ve got been working with on sustainability for years, and we needed to raised interact with those that could not see dairy as appropriate with their imaginative and prescient of sustainability.”

“At instances, a few of these discussions had been tough. However speaking with these teams who don’t agree with us is simply as vital as speaking with those that do agree with us,” she added. “COP allowed us to sit down down in a civil presence and have these discussions. The convention is the convening of disparate thought, however with some underlying consistencies. All of us care about our planet. We care about feeding individuals in a sustainable manner … we simply have a distinct manner of going about it.”

The U.S. Dairy Export Council fosters collaborative trade partnerships with processors, buying and selling firms and others to boost international demand for U.S. dairy merchandise and substances. USDEC is primarily supported by Dairy Administration Inc. by way of the dairy farmer checkoff. Learn how to republish this submit.  


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