The Royal Association of British Dairy Farmers has launched two new services aimed at reducing farmers’ energy costs.

Unveiled at the 2008 Dairy Event and Livestock Show, Getting Energy Reduction on Agendas in Industrial Manufacturing Operations (GERONIMO), is a two year pan-European initiative to which the association has been invited to be its UK partner and features a web-based service, Dairy Energy.

GERONIMO includes a hands-on series of simple calculators that are designed to help farmers establish the return on specific investments scheduled to save energy or tap into renewable energy potential.

RABDF has also launched Energy Services, a member initiative agreed with the Farm Energy Centre.

It features a no obligation electricity review for comparison with other suppliers, together with a customer specific termination letter to issue to the current supplier, 10% discount off tailor made energy audits, a choice of different suppliers and advice and back-up support from a team of energy specialists.

It also provides the opportunity for discount on energy auditing which is becoming an increasing requirement for farm assurance schemes.

RABDF technical and policy and policy adviser, Tom Rabbetts explained: “We are more than aware that farm energy costs have risen by up to 25% on some dairy units in the past 12 months, and they’re scheduled for a further 14% hike this coming winter and ultimately comprise a large proportion of total fixed costs.

“At a time when farmers are coming to terms with the fact cheap energy is a thing of the past, then they will all find time well invested in logging on to the GERONIMO site, and for RABDF members, taking up Energy Services. In addition to offering free and practical information, GERONIMO provides farmers with the opportunity to share opinions, advice and knowledge with dairy farmers and energy experts throughout Europe.”