Farmers have hit out at a ruling by the advertising watchdog that organic dairy farming is not “good for the land”. The Advertising Standards Authority banned an Arla advert for organic milk, saying it was “misleading”. The watchdog upheld a reader’s complaint that the ad, which also claimed the milk was “helping support a more sustainable future”, was misleading on the grounds that dairy farming was not good for the land.But Michael Oakes, NFU Dairy Board chairman, said the ruling was “disappointing”. “It’s been a long-held belief that that organic farming does hold benefits,” he said. “We are frustrated with how the ASA works, and we’d be really interested to learn how they reach these decisions.”Arla Foods, which is home to brands including Anchor and Cravendale, said one of the key principles of organic farming was good treatment of the land and that sustainability was at the heart of organic farming.The impact on the environment was considered in every step of the production process, the firm added.However, the ASA said consumers would interpret the “good for the land” claim to mean that production of the milk would have an overall positive impact on the environment, taking into account its full life cycle.The ASA said: “We acknowledged that Arla had provided evidence regarding the organic farming methods used and that they believed this was more sustainable than non-organic farming.”However, we did not consider they had substantiated that organic milk production had an overall positive impact on the environment, taking into account its full life cycle.”We therefore concluded that the claim was misleading.”It ruled that the ad must not appear again in its current form, adding: “We told Arla Foods to ensure that in future they did not make environmental claim about their products unless they held sufficient substantiation.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.