Our two demonstration dairy farms in Pakistan, which have operated since 2007 and 2010 respectively, are central to our dairy farmer training efforts. Animal care is incorporated into the programme on good dairy herd management for local farmers from whom we directly source milk.
The training includes instruction on cross-breeding and artificial insemination techniques by specialists in the field, to help the farmers in breeding and raising dairy animals that are adapted to the local environment.
We also provide expert technical support through offsite workshops in Pakistan, which also cover recommended practices for dairy animal health and welfare.
In 2011, Nestlé joined an initiative – through our Dairy Partners Americas joint venture in South America – to help more than 2200 dairy farms in Brazil to improve milk quality, safety and sustainability. As part of this initiative, which is grounded in the sharing of best practices, these dairy farmers receive training on improving animal welfare, including basic veterinary skills, and training on improving milking parlour conditions.
We have started to build our Dairy Farming Institute in Shuangcheng, Heilongjiang Province, China. Due to commence operations in 2014, the institute will include two demonstration farms, which will help facilitate the training of local dairy managers on best practices in dairy operations and animal husbandry. The training programme, which is being developed by leading universities, makes clear links between animal health and welfare, and milk production and dairy cow longevity.
As well as providing participating managers with practical lessons and tools for use in their day-to-day dairy operations, this intensive training will build capacity, support the transfer of knowledge to dairy employees, and ensure these practices, including those related to animal health and welfare, are applied by their workers.