One of Europe’s leading meat processors with facilities in Llanybydder and Cross Hands, has cut its CO2 emissions by 33 per cent over just four years in a ten-year strategy to reduce the company’s environmental impact.

Dunbia, part of Dawn Meats, in its second group CSR sustainability report, provided a progress update on its ambitious targets to reduce water and energy intensity by 40 per cent and CO2 emission intensity by 50 per cent by 2025.

As at the end of 2018, water intensity across the group had reduced by 23 per cent, energy intensity by 18 per cent and CO2 emissions by 33 per cent, as part of its on-going ambition to become Europe’s most sustainable meat company.

Dunbia and the wider Dawn Meats Group has also signed up to the science based targets initiative (SBTi), a joint programme of the UN Global Compact, CDP, the World Resources Institute and WWF.

Under the SBTi companies set emissions reduction targets in line with the level of decarbonisation required to meet the Paris Agreement commitment to limit global warming to an increase of 2C above pre-industrial levels.

It is the first European beef and lamb processor to publicly commit to SBTi and measure its progress on externally verified sustainability goals.

Since the company’s first CSR report was published in 2017, Dawn Meats Group has doubled in size following the strategic partnership and joint venture with Dunbia in the UK and the acquisition of the former Dunbia facilities in the Republic of Ireland.

Sustainability targets now apply across the entire group of over 7,000 staff, operating across locations in 12 countries.

Some of the key achievements outlined in the report are:

l Zero waste to landfill achieved ahead of schedule across the group;

l 1,100 tonnes of plastic switched to recyclable mono materials in 2018;

l 4.5m litres of fuel saved under the company’s Eco Drive initiative;

l 430,000 megawatt hours of low carbon energy generated.

While the issue of plastic waste has emerged to a far greater degree in mainstream debate this year, both Dunbia and Dawn Meats have been innovating for several years with significant success to improve how plastic is used in packaging to reduce environmental impact.

Packs across the group are now 14 per cent thinner than five years ago while not adversely affecting the shelf life of products or causing increased food waste. In addition, packs can now be more easily recycled at home.

Since the launch of its Eco Drive initiative in late 2015 the group’s outsourced hauliers have achieved significant reductions in fuel consumption and associated CO2 emissions. These savings have been achieved through an investment by hauliers in training and more efficient vehicles, saving 4.5m litres of fuel.