Biodiversity in food factoriesrumpus
Many industries and businesses are looking to reduce their carbon footprint. Announcing major plans to restructure their processes for the good of the planet. However, there’s a feeling that the food production industry – from farming to the factory – is being left behind.
It is important we explore the relationship between biodiversity and food production, highlighting stories of positivity bucking the trend.
Turning loss into gain
A report from Nature believes that, by 2050, it will be possible to have reversed biodiversity loss. In 2022, it’s about taking positive first steps in a long, but important, journey.
Whilst some companies are considering of biodiversity in food production, the conversation is far quieter than other environmental issues. As that starts to change, can consumer concerns be a driving factor for change?
The incentives of acting
Public perception can be a powerful thing. Failure to address issues that the public consider paramount can see the goodwill of customers, stakeholders and clients fade. On the flip side, new business models can help businesses navigate into profitable new markets centred around sustainability.
As time ticks on, there will be increased pressure from the government on businesses to play their part. Acting now can help swerve significant costs in the future.
Food farming and our need to feed an ever-increasing population is the primary driver of biodiversity loss. More mouths to feed means we need more land Our World In Data’s research says that agriculture now accounts for around half of the planet’s habitable land. Yet it doesn’t have to be a direct correlation.
Getting to net gain
Organic farming is essential for biodiversity net gain. Positive, peer-reviewed research published as far back as 2017 by Nature Plants found that pesticide usage in farms isn’t correlated to productivity. They found that 94% of farms studied would not lose production if they cut their pesticide usage, with two-fifths producing more.
The research also indicated that 78% of farms would be equally or more profitable when using fewer pesticides.
But what does biodiversity mean for food factories?
There are many things that food factories can do to make sure they reduce their carbon footprint.
For deliveries in and out of factories, the choice of vehicle can play a significant role. An 80% reduction in tailpipe emissions is expected to be achieved from the use of biomethane trucks been used as part of a partnership between Marks & Spencer and DHL.
M&S have gone one further too, bringing together stakeholders in its work with the WWF to address water scarcity in multiple regions.
Packaging is also a key point for review. Hovis, Quorn and McCain are amongst the 100+ companies to have signed up for the UK Plastic Pact. All major UK supermarkets have also signed up. The pact, which acts across the plastics supply chain, is helping create a circular economy which keeps plastic in the economy in the economy and out of the natural environment.
Changes made can go right down to minimizing food waste. As per one of our previous blogs, factory optimization, inventory management and quality control can play an important role to ensure what is farmed is consumed.
Most importantly, however, is assessing whether a factory is designed to maximise water and energy efficiency as well as productivity. As food & beverage construction experts, Ambrey Baker can redesign and revitalize live food production facilities, executing turnkey projects that can create instant benefits.
To find out how we can help you create food factories built for a biodiverse future, get in touch today at firstname.lastname@example.org