Stories from companies

Arla Foods Ingredients


Arla Foods Ingredients (AFI) is a 100% owned subsidiary of the world’s fourth largest dairy company, a cooperative owned by over 12,500 farmers across seven countries. In the late 1970s, AFI pioneered the extraction of whey proteins from the whey side-streams of cheese production, laying the foundations for the global whey protein market.

Today, AFI specializes in producing and supplying high-quality, dairy-based ingredients and functional solutions to enhance nutritional outcomes. The goal is to help create healthier and more appealing food products by using technology to leverage the benefits of dairy ingredients to optimize food and nutrition. 

For example, AFI works with food manufacturers to develop and market ingredients such as whey proteins, lactose, and other dairy-derived components for a wide range of applications. These include dairy products, infant nutrition, and baked goods, as well as affordable nutritious food products to help combat malnutrition in low-income countries. 

Joining the Private Sector Pledge 

AFI joined the Zero Hunger Private Sector Pledge in 2021. Originally, the company pledged DKK 1.6 million to two projects in Ethiopia. These investments focused on the transformation of papaya waste into nutritious snacks and improvements in the dairy value chain to enhance access to better dairy products.

Due to the situation in Ethiopia, AFI has now redirected some of its activities towards Pakistan. These activities support the Whey2Value project, which aims to repurpose the whey side-streams of local dairies.

It has been estimated that cheese production in Pakistan creates nearly 43.7 million litres of whey – representing an expensive waste of raw materials and an environmental risk when discharged with wastewater. However, using existing infrastructure, the whey could be utilised in an affordable, nutrient-rich drink with a more than three-month shelf life. It has been estimated that almost 437 million 200ml servings could be produced using existing side-streams. 

Implemented in collaboration with GAIN andthe Scaling Up Nutrition (SUN) Business Network, Whey2Value aims to:

  • increase the accessibility of nutritious milk-based products

  • provide a further source of income for dairy producers

  • improve the profitability of the dairy value chain overall

  • reduce food waste and the environmental impact of dairy production