Five meat and dairy companies emit more emissions than major oil companies, study finds

(EurActiv, 18 Jul 2018) Together, the five largest meat and dairy corporations (JBS, Tyson, Cargill, Dairy Farmers of America and Fonterra) are already responsible for more annual greenhouse gas emissions than ExxonMobil, Shell or BP, a new study released on Wednesday (18 July) warns.

The combined emissions of the top 20 meat and dairy companies surpass the emissions of entire nations like Germany, Canada, Australia or the United Kingdom, the report revealed.

Entitled “Emissions impossible – How big meat and dairy are heating up the planet”, the report published by the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP) and NGO Grain aims to highlight the climate impact of the meat and dairy industry.

Carbon footprint on the rise   

“Unlike their counterparts in the energy sector, the big meat and dairy companies have thus far escaped public scrutiny of their contribution to climate change. The lack of public information on the magnitude of their greenhouse gas footprints is one contributing factor,” the study says.

Amid the world’s 35 largest beef, pork, poultry and dairy companies to quantify their GHG emissions, only four companies – NH Foods (Japan), Nestlé (Switzerland), FrieslandCampina (the Netherlands) and Danone (France) – provide complete, credible emissions estimates, it explained.

Geographically speaking, most meat and dairy emissions come from the major meat and dairy exporting regions: the United States and Canada; the European Union; Brazil and Argentina; and Australia and New Zealand, the report says.

These regions account for 43% of total global emissions from meat and dairy production, even though they are home to only 15% of the world’s population, it adds.

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EurActiv, 18 Jul 2018: Five meat and dairy companies emit more emissions than major oil companies, study finds