Cows grazing in a field. Image credit: iStock

Tracking corporate climate goals for meat & dairy is more crucial than ever

April 22, 2022

Of all the corporate climate goals out there, those from the world’s biggest meat and dairy companies tend to ignite the most debate. On the one hand, many of these companies have come forward in the last several months with concrete dates for emissions reductions and achieving net zero before 2050. On the other, skepticism around the validity of these promises abounds, often with good reason.

Meat and dairy production account for 14.5% of all anthropogenic greenhouse gases worldwide. Despite ambitious targets such as JBS’ commitment to go net zero by 2040, industrial animal farming continues to rise along with the demand for animal-based proteins.

Given these factors, it’s more important than ever to track the progress of the world’s major meat and dairy companies when it comes to their climate goals. The first step towards that is knowing who has committed to what. The following list will help us — and our readers — track these companies’ progress on their path to net zero.

We’ll update it frequently as more companies join the list and as climate commitments evolve. 

This list is unlikely exhaustive. We welcome suggestions of agrifood corporate climate commitments we may have missed or not yet heard about. Send me a note here.

 

Company Key Commitment
Date of Commitment
 Arla Foods  2030: 30% total CO2 emissions reduction per kilo of milk

2050: net zero

 2019
 Bel Group  2025: carbon neutrality in its own plants

2035: 25% CO2 emissions reduction throughout entire value chain

 

 2022
 Cargill  2030: 30% reduction per ton of product sold

2050: net zero

 2019
 Dairy Farmers of  America, Inc.  2030: 30% Scope 1+2+3 emissions reduction  2020
 Danish Crown  2030: reduce carbon footprint by 50%

2050: net zero

 2022
 Danone  2030: 50% Scope 1+2+3 emissions reduction

2050: net zero

 2017
 Fonterra  2030: 30% reduction in manufacturing emissions

2050 for company manufacturing sites

 2017
 FrieslandCampina
 2030: 63% Scope 1 + 2 emissions reduction; 33% Scope 3 reduction

2050: net zero

 2022
 Hormel  2023: match 100% of global energy use with renewable sourcing; establish science-based CO2 emissions reduction targets
 JBS  2040: net zero
 Lactalis  Commitments forthcoming in 2022
 Nestlé  2025: 20% Scope 1+2+3 emissions reduction 2030: 50% Scope 1+2+3

2050: net zero

 2021
 Pilgrim’s (Cargill)  2030: 30% Scope 1 + 2 emissions reduction

2040: net zero

 2021
 Saputo  2025: 20% emissions reduction of “our operations”  2021
 Smithfield Foods 2030: net zero in US company-owned operations; 30% GHG emissions reduction across entire domestic supply chain

2050 net zero

 2020
 Tyson Foods, Inc. 2030: 30% Scope 1+2 emissions reduction; 30% per ton of finished meat for poultry, port, and beef Scope 3  2018
 Smithfield
2030: net zero  2020

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