Latin America and the Caribbean move towards Climate-Smart Dairy.
This project will develop digital tools to implement good practices in dairy establishments, comprising productive aspects, animal welfare, and people’s wellbeing, to adapt to and mitigate climate change.
Context of the story
Livestock production systems are dealing with the depletion of natural resources, climatic variations, increased demand for food, etc. Therefore, efforts should be made to sustainably increase their productivity and profitability, keeping in mind that the growth of livestock production can have significant environmental impacts. However, if these systems are efficient, it is possible to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and improve sinks, which in turn may increase productivity. At the same time, changes in rainfall and temperature patterns threaten agricultural production and increase the vulnerability of the people who depend on it. These threats can be reduced by increasing the adaptive capacity of producers
Three aspects for competitiveness: education, technology and research.
The implemented initiative
A private-public platform made up of public and private entities, farmer associations, and sectoral and governmental technical advisers. It has the purpose of building new capacities for the LAC dairy sector to implement sustainable management processes to achieve Climate-Smart Dairy Farms (CSDF), build a public-private network, develop and validate digital tools in the field, and to train technicians, advisers, farmers, etc. in good practices for CSDF by using the developed tools.
Agtech for the sustainability of dairy farms.
The technological solution
An application for cell phones to facilitate good practices in dairy establishments. These practices are related to pastures and crops, milking hygiene, animal health, environment, animal reproduction, socioeconomic management, feeding, animal welfare and inclement weather. Through this tool, dairy farmers can get information and improve their productivity, milk quality, adaptation and mitigation to climate change and move towards a Climate-Smart Dairy Farm. At the same time, an interactive e-learning course will be developed to train personnel and technicians of the dairy value chain about Climate-Smart Dairy Farms.
This application is used to see what you have to improve on your farm...because there is always something to improve, as in life itself.
The working platform was built and the project objectives were internalized. Consensus was reached on the base document containing the good practices (GP), which were organized in the following areas: pastures and crops, milking hygiene, animal health, environment, animal reproduction, socio-economic management, feeding, animal welfare, and climatic conditions. LECHECK.APP was developed. Based on the consensus document, it is an application that helps farmers and technicians implement GP on dairy farms. The aim of the app is to improve farm productivity, ensure milk quality, mitigate greenhouse gas production, and adapt to climate change. The app was validated for one year and has 526 users across 508 farms, entailing 79,756 GP which were surveyed in 12 countries. Excellent results were obtained in terms of usability and a list of necessary improvements was agreed upon, based on users’ recommendations.