Global food companies are taking steps to curb their emissions. Unilever, for instance, recently achieved 100% renewable electricity across its global operations. Factories, offices, warehouses, data centres, and distribution centres in five continents are now powered entirely by clean energy.
The company reached this milestone in 2019 after collaborating extensively with Ecohz on a bespoke decarbonisation plan. Power Purchasing Agreements (PPAs), contracts between a consumer and the developer of a new renewable energy project, were employed wherever possible to advance local energy markets and production capacity. Energy Attribute Certificates (EACs) accounted for the rest of Unilever’s supply.
The British multinational has vowed to halve the greenhouse gas footprint of its products across its value chain by 2030, while residual emissions will be balanced through carbon credits. Beyond energy, the company has pledged to release environmental plans that include landscape restoration, reforestation, and carbon sequestration.
Ecohz also assisted Asahi, the international brewing giant, in selecting high-quality renewable energy projects. In 2019, the Japanese firm signed a ten-year PPA with a wind farm in Poland that will power its breweries in the country.
The agreement, tailored to match the company’s priorities, will add renewable capacity to the grid and is part of a broader plan that includes energy efficiency improvements throughout the manufacturing process. Further, it contemplates development of innovative technologies like cell-based power generation utilising biogas from wastewater, thus adding an element of circularity to their business model.
Food and beverage companies face particular challenges. These include industry-specific uses of electricity and extensive value chains that go from materials sourcing to the points of sale. EACs, PPAs, carbon credits and biogas are part of a toolbox that Ecohz can employ to craft made-to-measure roadmaps for reducing emissions.
Further, net zero plans should consider more than the sourcing of electricity. Aligning with other sustainability targets, managing a renewable energy portfolio, and effective reporting are crucial elements in any company’s decarbonisation journey. Ecohz provides expert management and personalised guidance through every step.