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We are dedicated to great-tasting British dairy products and we are committed to being environmentally responsible. Because we care about people and the planet, as well as the animals we look after.


Since 2008 the dairy industry has been on a journey towards sustainability, reaching goals that reduce the impact of dairy production on our environment, while promoting food security for future generations.

Discover what we’ve achieved so far.

  • The UK is the 3rd largest milk producer in the EU1
  • 96% of people regularly eat or drink dairy products2
  • There are 1.9 million dairy cows in the UK3

Boosting Biodiversity

Biodiversity refers to the different kinds of animals, plants and bacteria found in an area. The biodiversity across the British countryside is having a tough time but the dairy industry is working to help change that.


  • The Dairy Roadmap is encouraging farmers to protect soil and water alongside productive agriculture
  • 30,000 km of hedgerows have been planted or restored to provide habitats for wildlife
  • 37,000 km of grass margins have been planted to prevent water pollution and protect hedgerows

Limiting Climate Change

We are already cutting our greenhouse gas emissions, increasing our energy efficiency, and we are using more renewable energy sources. Now, we’re aiming for Net Zero emissions by 2050.


  • We achieved a 24% drop in greenhouse gas emissions between 1990 and 2015
  • Nearly six out of ten farmers (56%) are actively making changes to reduce greenhouse gas emissions
  • 43% of dairy farmers currently produce or use renewable energy

Tackling Plastics and Packaging Waste

Plastic milk bottles are one of the UK’s most recycled products but we’re going further to reduce, reuse and recycle plastic packaging associated with the dairy industry.


  • 80% of plastic HDPE milk bottles are currently recycled – the average for plastic bottle recycling is 58%
  • There’s currently around 25% of recycled HDPE plastic in every milk bottle
  • 89% of the packaging used to ship and transport dairy products is reused or recycled

We have targets right up to 2050

Across the world it’s recognised that everyone must work together to prevent global warming from exceeding 1.5oC. Aligning with the UK government’s targets, the dairy industry has pledged to reach Net Zero carbon by 2050. It’s a hugely ambitious aim but we will work in partnership with each part of the dairy industry to achieve it.


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1 International Dairy Federation, World Dairy Situation Report 2021
2 Kantar data
3 Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Farming Statistics. December 2021. Accessed June 2022
4 The Dairy Roadmap Climate Ambition: Supporting UK Net-Zero, accessed May 2022

Unless stated, all information taken from The Dairy UK Roadmap 2018