Latin America and The Caribbean working in dairy sustainable intensification - LACTIS
Eleven countries from LAC work together characterizing dairy production systems of the region, modelling improved systems and validating an implementing environmental, economic and social sustainable dairy intensification systems.
Context of the story
The global population is expected to keep on increasing, which implies an increase in food demand. In this context, to supply this demand, productivity increases will be required. Latin America and the Caribbean region have enough natural resources to produce milk, even double the current production levels. However, would it be feasible to increase productivity and, at the same time, improve the family’s income and wellbeing while minimizing environmental impacts?
A common language for economic, social, and environmental sustainability of dairy production systems in Latin America and the Caribbean.
The implemented initiative
To talk about sustainable intensification in Latin America and the Caribbean was a challenge, given the high diversity of dairy production systems, the lack of characterization of these systems and the cultural differences between the different countries. With Project LACTIS, a cooperation platform was developed, which enabled to establish a baseline, to develop common indicators to characterize the systems, validate improved systems, and at the same time strengthen technicians’ and researchers’ abilities while spreading knowledge.
Farm systems modelling as a tool for evaluating sustainable intensification strategies.
The technological solution
To evaluate sustainable intensification strategies, the ‘Dairy systems simulation model’ (OLE! v5.3) and the ‘Dairy Monitor’ (ML2) were developed and adapted to the dairy production systems of the region (LAC). The simulation model enables to model - with a few inputs and easy to obtain on-farm - the baseline production systems in each country and improved scenarios, evaluating the biophysical, economic, social, and environmental impact. The 'Dairy Monitor 2' allowed the monitoring of commercial farms' physical, economic, social, and environmental indicators in which the planned changes were implemented. The proposed scenarios were validated on monitored commercial farms, with the interaction of technicians and farmers, resulting in learning exchange and knowledge divulgation.
“We work to have sustainable and resilient production systems using a common language in Latin America and the Caribbean “
• Regional dairy productions systems baseline establishment, through the classification and description of the production systems in 11 countries from LAC.
• Selection of improved strategies for sustainable intensification, through the agreed selection of key performance indicators of biophysical, economic, social and environmental performance.
• Simulation of sustainable intensification strategies in each county through the development and adaptation of the ‘Dairy systems simulation model’ applicable to LAC dairy systems.
• Development and validation of improved systems in 17 pilot farms.
• Start-up of a farmlet study at INTA Rafaela (TAMBO ROCA 2030 Project).
• Capacity building of 450 field technicians and 200 farmers.