The Netherlands, a country that is known for its famous tulips, bicycles, windmills and….. dairy industry! The Netherlands is known for its high-quality dairy products, and it is one of the world’s largest exporters of dairy goods. Despite being a relatively small country, The Netherlands has a well-developed dairy farming sector. Dutch dairy products like cheese and milk are exported all over the world. In 2022, The Netherlands exported $12.71 billion worth of dairy products (Trading Economics, n.d.). To put this in perspective, the total export value of The Netherlands in 2022 was $186.05 billion.
In the coming years, the Dutch dairy industry will face some challenging developments within the field of environmental responsibility. The further reduction of nitrogen and greenhouse gas emissions are important points that are on the political agenda. This will have an impact on the way the dairy industry operates. It forces the industry to change. But does the Dutch dairy industry have what it takes to overcome the challenges ahead?
ElkeMelk is a great example of an innovative company within the Dutch dairy industry that is taking on the challenge. ElkeMelk is not your typical dairy farm. They give the cows the place they deserve. At ElkeMelk they are not only proud of their product, but they also love to share the stories of their cows, farmers and the way they are working with high environmental responsibility. According to ElkeMelk it is all about the balance between the care of the cows, the environment, and the processing of the milk. Some measures ElkeMelk takes to make sure the balance is optimal:
- Within 10 minutes after milking, the milk is processed and packaged so that the unique taste and freshness goes directly into the bottle.
- Every cow is unique, on every bottle you can find which cow gave the milk. On their website, you can even find more information about the specific cow!
- The product is minimally processed. Therefore, all nutritional values are preserved and pure nature
- Their products are made with respect for animals and the environment. Curious about their methods? Have a look at how they respect their animals and the environment via:
Matthijs Baan, the owner of ElkeMelk, about the challenges ahead: “In The Netherlands, the requirements for animal welfare and the environment are very high. It is sometimes difficult to compete against imports where the rules are less strict. Therefore, it is vital to differentiate by being unique and delivering quality at an attractive price. For us, this is the only way to compete against imported dairy goods.”
Meeuwes Buiten, CEO of PEF Technologies, is very optimistic about the future of the dairy industry in The Netherlands: “If you have ever been to a dairy farm in The Netherlands, you will definitely not forget it. It is amazing how gently and carefully the farmers take care of the cattle. There is no wonder why dairy products in The Netherlands are famous all around the globe. We are proud that we can facilitate the dairy industry in The Netherlands to achieve its environmental goals and create products of the highest quality for consumers because eating healthy, nutritious food is one of the most important things you can do to protect your health.”