Research project A Europe-wide thematic network in support of a sustainable future for EU dairy farmers

D68 dairy cows

Contact our expert

Fleur Marchand

Fleur Marchand

Scientific director of Social Sciences department


General introduction

EuroDairy is an international network to increase the economic, social and environmental sustainability of dairy farming in Europe, at a time of unprecedented challenge for the sector. EuroDairy fostered the development and dissemination of practice-based innovation in dairy farming, targeting key sustainability issues following the abolition of milk quotas: socio economic resilience, resource efficiency, animal care, and the integration of milk production with biodiversity objectives.

Research approach

The EuroDairy network spans 14 countries, encompassing 40% of dairy farmers, 45% of cows and 60% of European milk output. The project adopted the interactive model of the European Innovation Partnership (EIP), putting farmers at the center of practice-based innovation. New and existing scientific knowledge was produced and adapted to find implementable solutions, which were then shared across the EuroDairy network.


This network is based on two pillars. The first pillar is the so-called 'operational groups', in which farmers work together with researchers to work around certain challenges or opportunities. EuroDairy partners support the creation of these operational groups, and have brought them together across borders to share innovations. As a second pillar, we have a network of some 120 innovative dairy farmers who actively seek to apply new knowledge on their farms, and who also demonstrate and share these innovative practices with their colleagues, in the form of a wide range of info sheets, brochures, and video material.