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  • Hugo Walker

Dawn Meats makes net zero pledge with its new environmental strategy

Dawn Meats, the Munster-headquartered global meat supplier, has pledged to reach net zero operational emissions by 2040. A brand new £90m investment is intended to innovate green changes across its business, focusing on four categories - environment, farming, food and society.

Following the UN Sustainable Development goals, Dawn Meats is looking to reduce Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions.

Scope 1 & 2

Scope 1 & 2 emissions are defined by the UN as direct emissions from owned or controlled sources, and indirect emissions from the generation of purchased energy, respectively. Dawn Meats aims to reduce Scope 1 & 2 emissions by 59% by 2030, through a fourfold plan: overhauling plant infrastructure, optimising transportation, concentrating on thermal energy generation, and ensuring sound and energy-efficient refrigeration systems.

Scope 3

Scope 3 emissions are indirect emissions associated with energy inputs elsewhere in the value chain. As part of the green initiative, Dawn Meats aims to extend its impact to its entire supply chain to push down its Scope 3 emissions.

“Through working with our primary producers and wider supply chain partners on innovative approaches to food production and packaging we have an opportunity to address Scope 3 emissions in a meaningful way. These are emissions which are amongst the most difficult to combat, but industry collaboration is vital in working toward Net Zero.” said Gill Higgins, group sustainability director at Dawn Meats.

The group has said that it is working on improving production efficiencies to drive down associated energy inputs.

“Dawn Meats has an opportunity to continue to positively impact the supply chain as well as our communities and environment, and a commitment to achieving net zero operational emissions by 2040 is a goal which is the culmination of significant progress to date,” said Niall Browne, CEO of Dawn Meats.

So far

Dawn Meats has reported a 40% reduction in Scope 1 and 2 emissions, and a 15% decrease in Scope 3 emissions, according to its report for the year ending 2021.

Among its ambitious emission goals, Dawn also aims to make all plastic packaging reusable, recyclable or compostable, and to source all of its livestock from Bord Bia and Red Tractor farms - the farm assurance hallmark in Ireland and the UK, respectively.

“Our leadership and wider team across Ireland and the UK are fully focused on delivering this goal and while we are proud of our achievements to date, we recognise there is much still to do,” added Browne.

Dawn Meats’ net zero drive comes as the climate crisis continues to worsen, with the environmental impact of the meat industry under particular scrutiny.


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