Issue #44: Green is the new gold

published on 28 April 2023

Our Top Stories

Sustainability and profit go hand-in-hand: Research from Bain & Company and EcoVadis has shown how Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) activities have impacted the financial performance of 100,000 businesses. The evidence is clear - more responsible business is usually more profitable. Edie highlights a key result that employees at firms with a strong focus on ESG are more likely to be satisfied. Businesses with the most satisfied employees saw three-year revenue growth up to 6% above those in their sectors with the least satisfied employees. This study demonstrates the real value of stepping up environmental commitments and climate action as the general workforce becomes more concerned with rising global emissions. [Edie]

The ecolabelling hype: Foodservice Footprint report on the vast potential of ecolabels to inform consumers in the face of climate change, but realise that there may be some sticking points in the journey to national roll-out. The data behind ecolabels can be highly complex, depending on how deep the analysis is, and this seems to be delaying the publication of labels for many brands and food companies. There is no right or wrong approach in terms of simplicity, but food climate data currently exists, and consumers have the right to see that information. What we do know is that those who have begun to put scores and footprints on their products and menus are leading the way, and that ecolabels are definitely here to stay. [Foodservice Footprint]

Scotland’s peatland restoration: Buccleuch Estates, one of Scotland's largest landowners, has announced that it will restore massive areas of peatland across its portfolio. According to FarmingUK, they have identified 28 sites on the estates where peatland has been degraded. This is in addition to more than 150 hectares of peatland that has already been restored across two sites in the Scottish Borders. In Scotland, it is estimated that peatland covers 20% of the land, but around 80% of this is degraded. Peatlands are one of the worlds’ largest carbon sinks, so Buccleuch Estates’ recent announcement is of vital importance for the future of the UK’s environment and biodiversity. [FarmingUK]

Brand Spotlight - Uber Eats

Uber Eats has begun trialling reusable packaging across London. The trial will help create a better understanding of what works and what doesn’t at a local level, and hopefully lead to wider roll out of this reusable system across more businesses and areas. Disposables still account for the vast majority of UK packaging. However, governments and businesses have begun cracking down on the proliferation of single-use items, in an effort to mitigate the detrimental impact of plastic pollution to both marine and terrestrial ecosystems across the world. [Edie]

Research Corner

Halving Brazilian deforestation: Samuel Levy and his team at the University of Cambridge have found that some of the world's largest slaughterhouses reduced cattle-driven deforestation in the Amazon by 15% (equivalent to an area 4.5 times the size of London) through their commitment to zero-deforestation policies between 2010 and 2018. If these policies were fully implemented and adopted across all cattle companies operating in the Amazon, 24,000km2 of forest (an area larger than Wales) could have been spared over this time, effectively halving cattle-driven deforestation in Brazil. Zero-deforestation policies are having a very important impact in protecting forests, and with widespread adoption and rigorous implementation they could achieve a lot more. [Global Environmental Change]

Stat Attack

“Across the Yorkshire Dales, total tree cover amounts to just 5%, the Woodland Trust said, with ancient woodland – the most beneficial for wildlife – making up just 1% of that cover. Conservationists are now hoping to create England’s biggest native woodland by planting 100,000 trees over the depleted landscape.”

Source: The Independent

The Big Picture

Fossil-fuel emissions have doubled over the past 30 years, quadrupled over the last 60 years, and risen nearly twelve-fold over the past century. The 0.2GtCO2 released in 1850 amounts to just half a one percent of the 37GtCO2 emitted in 2021. Image Source: Carbon Brief
Fossil-fuel emissions have doubled over the past 30 years, quadrupled over the last 60 years, and risen nearly twelve-fold over the past century. The 0.2GtCO2 released in 1850 amounts to just half a one percent of the 37GtCO2 emitted in 2021. Image Source: Carbon Brief

About Reewild

The food and agriculture industry is at the heart of the climate crisis, generating around a third of man-made greenhouse emissions. And while the challenge of reducing its impact may seem beyond our grasp, it is one that we all have the power to tackle.

We believe that the solution lies in climate transparency. That’s why we’re equipping businesses with the means to evaluate and communicate the emissions of their products. This, in turn, means consumers are armed with credible, independent information, which can be used to make more sustainable choices.

We know that many people want to take climate action but lack the necessary tools and information to do so. We're confident that, armed with the right knowledge, everyone can and will do their bit to build a greener, more sustainable food system.

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