In a combined pork and poultry industry-first, Cranswick has addressed the carbon impact of its animal feed by switching all its farm-to-fork sources to 100% certified deforestation-free soya. 

Certified soya is grown on land that is not associated with deforestation and land-use change and has enabled Cranswick  a 21% reduction in carbon compared to the previous system.  

Animal feed remains one of the big challenges for the meat industry and makes up around 80% of Scope 3 targets so switching to a different sourcing model is a substantial step forward. The business is moving from a book and claim system to a full mass balance system, which allows for greater transparency in certified soya moving through the supply chain.

The new soya sourcing model means that Cranswick is choosing to pay a higher price for feed but it puts the business in a positive position to meet its goal to halve Scope 3 emissions--the area which provides the greatest opportunity to reduce its carbon footprint--in nine years. 

Ash Gilman, head of Agricultural Strategy at Cranswick, commented: "Cranswick started using RTRS book and claim certified soya in 2018, and in 2020, we purchased RTRS regional mass balance soya. We are now in the process of moving towards full mass balance soya across all our pig and poultry farming businesses. As a member of the Government Soya Round Table and Soya Transparency Coalition, we fully appreciate the challenges involved in moving the pig sector onto 100% certified soya but are keen to demonstrate what can be achieved by closer collaboration.

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“We have already reduced the soya inclusion in our pig diets from 16% to under 10%. We are now switching the remaining soya to certified deforestation-free, and this will help us reduce our pig carbon emissions by 21%. The global soya supply chain has its challenges and this isn’t a perfect solution, but we are committed to reach our goal to become the world’s most sustainable meat business and that involves working towards further soya reduction within the diet and looking into further options to replace it.

“For example, we have undertaken trials using insect protein to replace soya within the pig diet and are constantly evaluating other options within the diet to reduce the overall carbon footprint even further. By signing up to Science Based Targets, we have committed to halving our emissions by 2030 and reaching Net Zero by 2040, and animal feed will play a big part of this.”

The business works collaboratively throughout the supply chain and believes the commitment to the mass balance system will encourage other businesses across the industry to step up and build on current activities being driven by the UK Roundtable on Sustainable Soya, The Soya Transparency Coalition (of which Cranswick are founding members) and the CGF Forest Positive Coalition Soy Roadmap. The business supports the Amazon Soy Moratorium and is a signatory to the Cerrado Manifesto.