Read the Progressive Dairy Canada digital edition

Dairy Farmers of Canada: Canadian dairy: DFC recognized internationally for its sustainability practices

Published on 30 August 2019

Dairy Farmers of Canada (DFC) has received an international recognition from Unilever for its commitments towards sustainable milk production practices.

As a result, Unilever has concluded that 100% of milk produced in Canada is sustainably sourced in accordance with its Sustainable Agriculture Code.



Unilever is one of the world’s leading consumer goods companies and produces and sells around 400 brands in more than 190 countries to billions of consumers. In 2010, Unilever launched the Sustainable Agriculture Code, which has become a major tool in sustainable sourcing programs.

The code, revised in 2017, includes a collection of good practices, such as water and waste management, which aim to codify important aspects of sustainability in farming and apply them to the supply chain.

DFC has achieved equivalency to Unilever’s Sustainable Agriculture Code after comparing its code’s standard to the way milk is produced in Canada.

Considerations were given to provincial environmental regulations and labour laws, the national supply management system, as well as the commitments made and being carried out through proAction, DFC’s robust quality assurance program.

“Unilever’s recognition is an acknowledgment of Canadian dairy farmers’ commitment to responsible stewardship of our animals and the environment, and to high-quality, safe and nutritious food for consumers,” said Pierre Lampron, DFC president. “Collectively, we wouldn’t have been able to obtain this international recognition without the hard work of farmers to implement a robust, credible and ambitious program like proAction,” he concluded.


The Unilever Sustainable Agriculture Code, applicable to agricultural suppliers, farmers and contractors, not only requires implementation and adherence to sustainable practices but also sets out the expectation that continuous performance improvements be achieved over time.

This means monitoring compliance with the code and implementing proactive actions to improve results. For example, Unilever suppliers are encouraged to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and other related energy-use emissions.

“We are delighted that our work with Dairy Farmers of Canada to strengthen action on biodiversity and good environmental practices across the sector means that the dairy produced across more than 10,000 farms meets the standards set in our Sustainable Agriculture Code.

This is helping us make sure the ice cream we produce in Canada is being made with sustainable dairy,” said Giulia Stellari, sustainable sourcing director at Unilever.

Visit Unilever's Sustinable Living site for more information on Unilever’s approach to sustainable sourcing. Visit the proAction site for more information on the sustainable production practices being adopted by Canadian dairy farmers through proAction.  end mark

PHOTO: Unilever is one of the world’s leading consumer goods companies. Image courtesy of DFC.


Founded in 1934, Dairy Farmers of Canada (DFC) is the national organization which defends the interests of Canadian dairy farmers and strives to create favourable conditions for the Canadian dairy industry. Working in accordance with supply management principles, DFC promotes safe, high quality, sustainable and nutritious Canadian dairy products made from 100% Canadian milk through various marketing, nutrition, policy and lobbying initiatives. Driven by a strong sense of community and pride, DFC and Canadian dairy farmers actively support a number of local and national activities. Visit for more information.