Waitoa Free Range Chicken receives net carbon zero certification

The company is New Zealand's only independently certified producer of net carbon-zero chicken
calendar icon 13 December 2021
clock icon 3 minute read

It isn't the first accreditation the company has received. In 2013, it was awarded SPCA accreditation for their animal welfare practices

"It's taken a long time to get here, and it's something we are really excited about," Jonathan Gray, Chief Executive, said in a press release.

Other companies and organisations who've completed the certification and reduced their carbon footprint significantly in the process include Auckland District Health Board, University of Canterbury and Freightways.

In addition to the obvious environmental benefits, Toitū carbon-zero certification helps build consumer confidence.

To qualify for the Toitū certification, Waitoa had to show plans for reducing emissions across the supply chain and measure progress. Emissions from raw materials, manufacturing, distribution, packaging, and disposal were factored in, with Waitoa measuring and reporting on annual carbon footprint reductions.

One initiative involved researching alternative feed sources to minimise reliance on soy-based feed, a product often associated with deforestation.

Waitoa made an investment to revamp its packaging line. The company is moving to 100% reusable, recyclable and compostable packaging by 2025. Currently, they're at 90%.

Waitoa is also aiming to have their packaging contain 50 per cent recycled materials by 2025. Currently, they're sitting at 30%.

"We take an evidence-based approach to reducing our footprint leading in reducing carbon emissions, water stewardship and sustainable agriculture and production," said Gary. "Our strategy is about doing good for our people, community, environment and business so we can leave both the business and the environment in a good place for the next generation."

Melanie Epp

Melanie Epp is a freelance agricultural journalist from Ontario, Canada.

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