Scottish Organic Milk Producers co-operative has launched a project called Scottish Organic Dairy Goals.
Funded by the Scottish Government’s Knowledge Transfer Innovation Fund (KTIF), the six-month project focuses on formalising an approach to monthly financial, physical and environmental benchmarking, alongside facilitated group meetings. The project will also identify meaningful measurements of natural capital and carbon, as well as address issues relating to organic protein.
The project was launched on 31 August 2023 at the first farm meeting of the project at Marshill Farm in South Lanarkshire - a 380 organic dairy farm run by Andrew Stewart.
SOMP Chairman Ross Paton, of Torr Farm in Dumfries & Galloway, said:
“The goal of the project is to improve technical efficiency and better understand environmental and biodiversity metrics for Scotland’s organic dairy sector. While there are elements of the project that will be of interest to all organic producers, the benchmarking work is designed specifically around organic dairy performance.
“The next generation are the future of organic dairy, and the on-farm meetings are a great opportunity for them to connect with other likeminded people, to challenge assumptions and to collaboratively explore what can be achieved in Scotland’s fantastic organic dairy sector.”
SAOS Head of Co-op Development, Robert Logan, who supports SOMP, said:
“It’s great to see the Scottish Government backing this project and recognising the impact that proactive people working together can have. Co-ops like SOMP are well established in Scotland’s farming industry, enabling networks of businesses with shared interests and values to achieve more by working together – which then benefits family farms, supply chains and rural communities.
“SOMP is a great example of a farming co-op punching above its weight by facilitating knowledge exchange and securing specialist business development for its members. It’s unusual in that it has a very wide geographical spread, but this project drills down into what really matters to organic dairy enterprises – everything from soil health to financial performance to legumes.”
For more information about SOMP or the Dairy Goals project, email Robert Logan.