Brighter Green has released a policy paper exploring the growth of industrial dairy systems in India, China, and countries of Southeast Asia. It explores the trend toward increased dairy consumption and production and argues that the growth of industrial systems results in severe consequences for the environment, public health, animal welfare, and rural economies. The report examines systemic changes in Asia while also providing country-specific case study analyses of Cambodia, China, India, Indonesia, Thailand, and Vietnam.
Asia is now the world’s highest dairy-consuming region, with 39% of global consumption, largely due to China and India, the world’s two most populous countries. “Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations” (CAFOs) or “factory farms” are being set up to meet this demand but the detrimental impacts of this phenomenon for Asia are still largely undocumented. CAFOs create high levels of waste and pollution, affecting the livelihoods of workers and surrounding communities, contaminating local soil and water supplies, and producing greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global climate change. The report authors argue that greater importance should be given to this opportunity to reduce global greenhouse gases, pollution, and public health risks from the increased demand, the growing consumption of Western-style diets, and the use of intensive systems of production for farmed animals.
The report also includes a set of recommendations for policy-makers, civil society organizations, international institutions, and the private sector to move in this direction.
You can read the report here.