Sourcing Ingredients with an Eye to Reducing GHG Emissions

Featured Image

A report from Pittsburgh-based First Insight unveiled in January found 68% of consumers said they were willing to pay more for sustainable products, but 34% of retailers said they believed consumers were willing to pay more.

KANSAS CITY  Reducing greenhouse gas emissions has become a goal spanning the entire food and beverage supply chain. Retailers, multinational food companies, and ingredient suppliers have set objectives. The US Securities and Exchange Commission may act on the issue, and millions of consumers expect the industry to have sustainability plans that include reducing GHG emissions. 

Ingredient sourcing will play a pivotal role in reaching goals. Pulses, besides offering plant protein, cut down on GHG emissions. The choice of sweeteners factors in as well, and ingredients sourced closer to manufacturing sites will reduce the amount of fuel needed to transport inputs.

Potential SEC action

The SEC on March 21 proposed rule changes that would require registrants to include certain climate-related disclosures in their registration statements and periodic reports. The disclosures would include information about direct GHG emissions (Scope 1) and indirect emissions from purchased electricity or other forms of energy (Scope 2). Scope 3 involves GHG emissions from upstream and downstream activities in the value chain. If a registrant had set goals for Scope 3 reductions, the registrant would be required to disclose those GHG emissions.

At least 19 food retailers worldwide have committed to reducing their GHG emissions, according to a Rabobank report released in April. They include Tesco, Walmart, Target, Aldi and Ahold Delhaize. Some have set both a long-term target of achieving net-zero emissions by 2050, which means the total GHG emissions from the company are equal to or less than the emissions it removes from the environment, as well as a short-term target of a 25% or a 30% reduction by 2025 or 2030.

Consumers are taking note. A survey from Garden of Life, a supplement company based in Palm Beach Gardens, Fla., found 82% of Americans said they consider a company’s environmental record and sustainability when choosing which products to purchase. In the survey conducted Jan. 26-30 and involving 1,000 US adults over age 18, 48% ranked food and nutrition products as most important, ahead of second-place household products at 28%. By age group, 93% of Gen Z consumers and 89% of millennials said they considered a company’s environmental record and sustainability practices when choosing products. The percentages were 79% for Gen X and 76% for baby boomers.

READ THE FULL ARTICLEat Baking Business.

sustainability  consumer spending

Looking for more info? Complete the form below.