Yes, dairy does belong in a sustainable diet for the planet.
With the global population set to increase by approximately 2.4 billion people by the year 2050, it is predicted that demand for food production may need to rise by about 70%. The overall environmental impact of dairy must be weighed against its nutritional value when modelling the most sustainable options for feeding our growing population. For example, cows convert human-inedible materials such as grass into a nutrient dense, affordable source of protein.
As well as being nutritious, sustainable food production must also be safe, economically viable, environmentally acceptable and capable of meeting volume demands.
Dairy is considered a nutritious, versatile and affordable food and is well placed to play a role in meeting the global need for sustainable food production. This is why dairy continues to be included in dietary guidelines for sustainable diets.
Research and innovation in technology and farming methods are continually progressing to enable dairy production to proceed in a more sustainable manner.