Dairy wants to see science as part of sustainable trade

A dairy trade policy specialist says concerns are growing as sustainability becomes more forefront in international relationships.

“Sustainability in the U.S. has historically been a private sector-led initiative, it’s not something that the government weighs heavily into or is an essential piece of our trade negotiations.”

Becky Rasdall with the International Dairy Foods Association tells Brownfield some proposals of the European Union and United Nations are suggesting have unclear metrics and rationale which could in turn impact dairy trade.

“If there’s a proposal to decrease the consumption of animal products including dairy, we wonder what science or rationale is behind that,” she says.  “Same with the EU where they’ve proposed a tax on carbon footprinting for imported products.”

She says EU proposals are still under construction but include growing their geographical indications strategy along with animal welfare labeling.  The EU’s Farm to Fork Strategy also calls for a sustainable food system but Rasdall says it hasn’t been implemented and leaves a lot of questions.

IDFA recently provided their sustainability trade principles to U.S. officials calling for measurable, science-based environmental sustainability outcomes that benefit consumers as well as the environment.

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