Supermarket giant Morrisons has become the first to sign up to Arla UK 360 farm standards programme for its entire Arla milk supply.

The initiative supports more than 200 British dairy farmers to develop and deliver best practice on-farm.

Graham Wilkinson, agriculture director at Arla Foods UK said: “It is hugely significant that Morrisons is supporting the Arla UK 360 programme across all of its Arla supplied milk. This level of support for our farmer-owners creates real scale to the to the 360 programme and its continued development.”

The move means that Arla owners aligned with Morrisons will transition to the Arla UK 360 standards in the coming months with a target to have reached these by October 2019.

The standards cover all six areas of the 360 model:

  • Animal Health;
  • People;
  • Environment and natural resources;
  • Community;
  • Economic reinvestment and resilience and
  • Research and Development.

Sophie Throup, agriculture manager at Morrisons added: “Being supplied by farmers who care about their staff, environment and the welfare of their animals is important to our customers and therefore it is important to us. We are looking forward to working with Arla on introducing their 360 standards to our pool of farmers.”

The announcement comes just weeks after the 360 programme was recognised at leading industry awards as an innovative farming approach that benefits everyone.

Arthur Fearnall, a Morrisons aligned owner and member of Arla’s Board of Directors said: “The more support we can secure for the Arla UK 360 programme, the greater the number of farmer-owners that can participate.

Creating one standard for our customers that leads the UK industry, provides an increased financial return for farmers and flexibility for research and development to continuously improve our industry.

“We are delighted that Morrisons will be investing in Arla UK 360 across its entire Arla milk supply meaning around 200 farmers will benefit from their additional support.”