Global Criteria

Providing a holistic approach to sustainability

The DSF is focused on eleven key sustainability criteria (Global Criteria), identified as relevant to the dairy sector globally. The Framework also outlines the high level objective (Strategic Intent) the dairy sector commits to working towards for each of the categories as detailed below.

The DSF allows individual groups, regions or organizations to develop different initiatives and programs on a local basis that work towards addressing the Criteria and Strategic Intents of the framework.

Each Global Criteria has a high level indicator established on which the DSF will report on an aggregated basis for the global dairy value chain. These are listed below.

  • Greenhouse Gas Emissions

    GHG emissions across the full value chain are quantified and reduced through all economically viable mechanisms.
    Baseline for Greenhouse Gas Emissions Indicator – October 2017

  • Soil Nutrients

    Nutrient application is managed to minimize impacts on water and air, while maintaining and enhancing soil quality.

  • Soil Quality and Retention

    Soil quality and retention is proactively managed and enhanced to ensure optimum productivity.

  • Water availability and quality

    Water availability, as well as water quality, is managed responsibly throughout the dairy value chain.

  • Biodiversity

    Direct and indirect biodiversity risks and opportunities are understood, and strategies to maintain or enhance it are established.

  • Working Conditions

    Across the dairy value chain, workers operate in a safe environment, and their rights are respected and promoted.

  • Animal Care

    Dairy animals are treated with care, and are free from hunger and thirst, discomfort, pain, injury and disease, fear and distress, and are able to engage in relatively normal patterns of animal behaviour.
    Baseline for Animal Care Indicator – October 2017 

  • Waste

    Waste generation is minimised and, where avoidable, waste is reused and recycled.

  • Market Development

    Participants along the dairy value chain are able to build economically viable businesses through the development of transparent and effective markets.

  • Rural Economies

    The dairy sector contributes to the resilience and economic viability of farmers and rural communities.

  • Product Safety and Quality

    The integrity and transparency of the dairy supply chain is safeguarded, so as to ensure the optimal nutrition, quality and safety of products.