Animal feeding is the first step in the production of milk and affects the rest of the production chain. Information on feeding systems is necessary for estimating the environmental impact of the livestock sector; for developing diets and feeding strategies to reduce the carbon footprint and to optimize milk composition; for enhancing animal productivity, health and welfare; for increasing the quality and safety of animal products; and for improving economic sustainability of milk production.
Three partner organizations (IDF, FAO and IFCN) undertook separate but complementary approaches to map dairy feeding systems in the world. This report builds a knowledge foundation for animal feeding systems to serve as a valuable resource for the dairy sector and connected chain partners. It can be used both to compare and improve feeding systems already in use by examining the success of similar systems from around the world and for the development of new feeding systems.