Introduction to the challenge addressed

The "Calcul Automatisé des Performances Environnementales en Elevage de Ruminants" (CAP'2ER) calculation tool developed at IDELE, was utilized in the project Beef Carbon, developed by the Council of Research in Agriculture and Analysis of Agricultural Economics (CREA) in collaboration with two beef farmers association (Unicarve and Aprocarne) with the aim to evaluate the carbon footprint of beef farms involved in the project before and after the introduction of the mitigation strategies that have been identified in the project and which will be used to reduce the CFP of beef cattle farming by 15% over the next 10 years.


Description of Innovation

The tool was used to evaluate the effect of implementing a series of actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The process starts with the collection of a set of data regarding farm area, animals raised, crops, feed and type of farming.  The carbon footprint of the meat produced and other factors, such as air and water quality, biodiversity, energy and carbon sequestration is then calculated. This calculation includes greenhouse gases emitted as part of livestock farming, but also those emitted to produce purchased feed, fertilizer, seed, pesticides, fuel and electricity. The determination of the carbon footprint on the farms was carried out using the CAP’2ER; with this calculation model, it’s possible to run simulations of modifying the farming system being considered in the calculation by introducing innovations that are believed to improve environmental performance and see what happens in terms of Carbon footprint. In the case of this project it was managed by a CREA operator, but a version of the Cap’2er is available on IDELE web site for the farmers who wants to try it.  


Impact on farm performance

The result of the tool CAP2’ER are useful to the farmers to be aware of what is the impact of their activity on the environment, and to understand and plan what are the possible and doable applications and solutions to aim to reduce that impact. As already applied in France, the improvements of a farm toward a better sustainability, and thus the reduction of impact on environment, can be rewarded to the farmer with economic subsidies or tax benefits


Audio-visual material


Attached below link to table with results from the application of the tool to one of the farm tested







Farmer comment (for Good Practices)

To measure the impact of a farm on the environment a tool is absolutely needed. Cap’2er is a useful tool and gives the possibility to obtain good data to start planning a development of the farm management toward a better sustainability.