Institute of

Farm Economics

Deputy Director


Kerstin Martens
Institute of Farm Economics

Bundesallee 63
38116 Braunschweig
Phone: +49 531 596 5102
Fax: +49 531 596 5199

Farm Economics AB_Environmental Protection and Sustainability AE_Milk Production Livestock Farming and Aquaculture

Status-quo-analysis of selected sustainability aspects of milk production


Sustainability became an issue also in milk production. Dairies are increasingly requested to assert their market partners in processing and trade that their milk is of sustainable origin. How can this be achieved? The Thünen Institute of Farm Economics developed a sustainability concept which was implemented in cooperation with agribusiness partners in Lower Saxony.

Feeding racks in a stanchion barn (© Landesvereinigung der Milchwirtschaft Niedersachsen e.V. (LVN))

The core of the concept is the development of a 'basic tool' for written interviews with milk producers. The tool was jointly developed by the Institute of Farm Economics, the agency 'Land und Markt' and the working party 'Sustainable milk production' of the 'Regional Association of the Milk Industry in Lower Saxony' (LVN). The participating parties jointly defined ecological, animal welfare, social and economic sustainability issues to include in the interviews and developed indicators to measure them. With the subsequent survey of 750 milk producers a data base was created that serves for further branch-wide discussions.

The final report has been published as Thünen Working Paper 28 (in German version).