Dairy Environmental Policy Question 9

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Does the brand (company) have a policy to reduce the ammonia emissions generated by the cows manure?

  • Dutch version: Heeft het merk (bedrijf) een beleid ter vermindering van de ammoniakuitstoot met betrekking tot koeien mest?
  • German version: Verfolgt der Markenhersteller eine Strategie, um Ammoniakemissionen, welche von Gülle stammen, zu reduzieren?

References and Guidelines

Ammonia is a colorless gas with a very distinct smell. It is created when urine and faeces from cows come together in the grasslands and the sheds. When manure (mix of urine and faeces) is not handled adequately, the ammonia will oxidate in the air and becomes very acid. When it rains the acid falls down and destroys forests and nature. More than half of the “verzuring” in holland is due to the ammonia emissions in the dairy industry. Additionally, ammonia pollutes the soil water. [1]

Ammonia does not only happen in the stall, but also in manure storage, during grazing and fertilization. However, the amount of ammonia produced by grazing is lower than the emissions in the cowsheds. There are various possibilities to reduce emissions of ammonia:

  • change the shed system (create floors that divert urine away from feces)
  • change fertilizing techniques (directly apply the manure on the field and no storage)
  • change food (by providing cows with less protein in their food) [[2]]

Answering guidelines

Answer Yes:

  • [Brand] has a policy to reduce ammonia emissions generated by the cows manure (see link/page).

Answer No:

  • [Brand] explicitly claims not to reduce ammonia emissions generated by the cows manure (see link/page)

Answer ?:

  • [Brand] does not communicate any information on reducing ammonia emissions generated by the cows manure. So it is not clear if the brand is committed to avoiding
  • [Brand] mentions [a sort of policy], but the brand does not mention any clear [criteria/targets/achievement].