CRANSWICK COUNTRY FOODS WATTON SITE ACHIEVES CARBON NEUTRAL CERTIFICATION

Cranswick Country Foods, Watton joins the growing list of Cranswick sites to be awarded PAS 2060 Carbon Neutral status, underlining the business’s ambition to be the world’s most sustainable meat business and achieve Net Zero by 2040. 

The Watton team have decarbonised operations since 2017, activating projects across the site to drive down emissions. The establishment of a Net Zero governance team, investment in climate-literacy training and appointment of internal ‘Changemakers’ have galvanised the site to minimise carbon impacts. Focus areas have included climate-smart systems upgrades plus energy efficiency and recovery projects. To negate the carbon impacts still to be eliminated, the site has made strategic offset investments into verified reforestation and community development projects. In addition to validating carbon reductions to date, the PAS 2060 certification endorses the site team’s plan to go further, with a blueprint to achieve Net Zero by 2040. 

 

REDUCING CARBON TO DATE

Since 2017, the site has worked on several efficiency programmes to increase productivity, replace old equipment and machinery and enhance the site’s environmental performance. 

Reduction initiatives include: 

  • Replacement of the retail refrigeration plant, reducing energy consumption and raw material usage.
  • Installation of a heat recovery system, saving gas consumption through reduced boiler use.
  • A move to LED lighting across the site, curbing inefficiency to use less electricity.

These have contributed to a reduction of overall emissions by 58% since 2017 – or 7,216 tonnes of carbon emissions. 

DELIVERING CARBON NEUTRALITY

Magda Arrowsmith, Site Director Cranswick Country Foods, Watton, reflects on her site’s achievements:

"At Watton, we're serious about quality pork products and equally as serious about sustainability, from farm to fork. I'm so proud of the progress my team have made to achieve the PAS 2060 Carbon Neutral certification, a big step on Cranswick's path to Net Zero. Over recent years, we've worked hard to identify and action decarbonisation opportunities across our site. We've now got a robust plan to minimise our emissions further and achieve Net Zero by 2040 - with a skilled, engaged team to make that vision a reality. It's also about being part of a positive future for British Farming, driving climate-smart change in our operations, in our communities and right across the value chain - creating a sustainable food future for all.”

On the journey to Net Zero, offset projects are in place to compensate for remaining emissions, removing the corresponding level of carbon from the atmosphere. Site colleagues voted to support reforestation projects in the Amazon and the UK. The Portel-Pará rainforest REDD project is verified by Verra as a high-quality initiative to combat climate change and support communities, delivering positive impacts in line with the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Closer to home, investment into the UK Forestry project in Doddington North Moor supports native reforestation. 

The two chosen projects are:

1.    Portel-Pará REDD Amazon Rainforest Protection Project, Brazil

This project works to mitigate rainforest deforestation in Brazil, to avert over 22 million tonnes of Carbon Dioxide-equivalent greenhouse gas emissions over a 40 year period. The project manages land as a private conservation reserve with rigorous monitoring and enforcement of standards while also providing support and employment opportunities to the local community. Biodiversity conservation benefits are notable, as the area provides habitat for numerous species, several designated as endangered or vulnerable. 

2.    Doddington North Moor in the UK – part of the Woodland Carbon Code, and the largest planned woodland reforestation project in England in the last 25 years. The forest will cover an area of around 354 hectares in Northumberland, with 268 hectares of mixed forest to be planted. The productive woodland will be managed to maintain it in the long-term, through removing some trees to let light through the canopy, as well as to provide sustainably sourced wood. The reforestation project will allow 101,988 trees to be planted and capture around 92,670 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent greenhouse gas emissions over 65 years.

What’s next?

The Watton team are ready to build on their Carbon Neutral achievement with an ambitious programme to further reduce overall emissions, in line with their commitment to becoming Net Zero by 2040. 

The PAS 2060 standard validates a plan of future reduction solutions, which include: 

  • Investment in ammonia systems, eliminating the use of harmful F-gas onsite
  • CHP heat pumps and heat recovery in office and plant areas
  • Harvest roof water and steam to use in operations, avoiding waste
  • Site-produced renewable energy via solar panel installation and integration
  • Move to cleaner power with electric forklift investments and a switch to biofuels
  • Automatic light and water control systems to reduce energy and water consumption

The CPD-trained Net Zero leadership team will continue to work closely with colleagues to deliver these initiatives, and the sustainability effort does not stop at the site gates. The Watton team operate in partnership with Wayland Farms. Together they uphold Cranswick's farm to fork commitment; to integrate sustainable practices throughout operations, driving positive change across the value chain. 

The team at Cranswick Country Foods, Watton joins Cranswick Country Foods Poultry, Hull, Cranswick Convenience Foods BarnsleyCranswick Convenience Foods Sutton FieldsCranswick Gourmet Sausage LazenbysCranswick Continental Foods BuryCranswick Country Foods BallymenaCranswick Convenience Foods Milton KeynesCranswick Gourmet Pastry in Malton and Cranswick Country Foods at Riverside, who have all achieved carbon neutrality.