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S+Durable ?

Joanna Litt (ITAVI), Guillaume Coutelet (ITAVI), Laurence Fortun-Lamothe (INRA)

A tool to assess consequences of innovations in livestock production on sustainability of production units

DIAMOND is a method to assess the sustainability of livestock production units that can be used by commercial enterprises. Many of the sustainability criteria of DIAMOND, however, are difficult to assess under research conditions because they depend on real-world choices that are strategic (e.g. marketing approach, non-agricultural services), structural (e.g. number of labor units) and financial (e.g. financial autonomy, receipt of financial aid). In addition, some of the indicators are not relevant under research conditions because the latter’s labor requirements (work related to experiments) and financial constraints (depreciation) do not represent those in the field due to characteristics of experiments.

Consquently, we developed the “S+durable?” (“Is it more sustainable?” in English) tool to assess consequences of implementing innovations on the sustainability of livestock production units. In S+durable?, the sustainability objectives and criteria assigned to livestock production units are those of the DIAMOND method. We retained 16 of DIAMOND’s 30 criteria: 5 in the economic pillar, 6 in the environmental pillar, and 5 in the social pillar. For each criteria, we defined 3-5 indicators that are easily assessed under research conditions for each production phase (maternity and fattening in rabbit production; production and force-feeding in foie gras production). The influence of the innovation on the indicators is assessed in a semi-quantitative manner according to a scale (-1.0, -0.5, 0, +0.5, +1.0) that indicates the effect of the innovation (highly negative, moderately negative, none, moderately positive, highly positive, respectively) on each indicator in relation to a control system.

The effect of the innovation on a sustainability criteria equals the mean of its indicator scores (range = -1 to +1). Consequences of implementing innovations on the sustainability of units are represented graphically using a radar chart with 16 branches, one for each sustainability criteria assessed.


work file

(MS© Excel)

result format file

 (MS© Powerpoint)