Cranswick’s Ballymena site marks key sustainability milestone with carbon neutral success and NI first

Cranswick’s Ballymena manufacturing site is the first in its sector in Northern Ireland to achieve carbon neutral certification, PAS 2060, following a three-year investment in a range of efficiency and carbon cutting projects.

Thursday, 3rd June 2021, 6:00 am
Tony Demaine, Site Director at Cranswick’s Ballymena manufacturing site is joined by members of the senior management team including John Brady, Neil Ross, Martin Walsh and Johanna Donaghy

The key milestone is a critical step in the site’s journey to Net Zero - a goal it aims to reach by 2040.

PAS 2060 is the internationally recognised specification for carbon neutrality. The accreditation demonstrates that Cranswick is on an approved decarbonisation pathway and has invested in high quality Verra and Gold Standard verified offsets, certified to remove existing carbon from the atmosphere to help businesses reach carbon neutrality.

Since 2018, the senior management team and employee Changemakers have delivered a range of initiatives to cut emissions, including switching to the purchase of 100% renewable electricity, an LED lighting replacement scheme and the installation of heat recovery systems to reuse excess and waste less heat.

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Site Director Tony Demaine, said: “We’re delighted to be the first agri-food manufacturer in NI to receive carbon neutral status. This first step towards achieving net zero emissions has been a true team effort, with each department playing their part and committing to identifying and implementing changes which have delivered clear and tangible results. We want to help in the growth of the local green economy and we’re looking forward to working with our farmers and communities for a fair and just transition for Northern Ireland, because we recognise we can’t compete on climate – we all have a role to play.”

Alongside its own capital investment, Cranswick received support from Invest NI which helped fund a change from diesel to gas furnaces within the site.

Cranswick’s Second Nature sustainability strategy reflects the ambition to be the world’s most sustainable meat business and is focused on key areas including food waste, plastics usage, greenhouse gases, renewable energy, animal welfare and support for local communities. As part of the journey to achieve net zero emissions by 2040, Cranswick has committed to setting Science-Based Targets and has made considerable progress in this area.

Recent achievements include retention of the global Business Benchmark on Farm Animal Welfare (BBFAW) Tier One status - backed by Compassion in World Farming and World Animal Protection; surpassing the Champions 12.3 target set in January 2018, achieving a 61% reduction in edible food waste by removing over 4,200 tonnes of food waste against the 2017 baseline; during the past year, enough food has been donated to create 229,000 meals for vulnerable people through a partnership with Fareshare and several local community initiatives.

In November, Cranswick’s Milton Keynes site became the first facility within the Group to be awarded carbon neutral certification. Since then, eight more Cranswick sites, including Ballymena have achieved the same status as the company continues to forge ahead with its climate change agenda.

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