Morrisons' farmer suppliers to be 'net zero by 2030'

Morrisons will soon work with its suppliers to create 'net zero carbon farm models'
Morrisons will soon work with its suppliers to create 'net zero carbon farm models'

Morrisons has pledged to become the first UK retailer to be completely supplied by net zero carbon farms by 2030, five years ahead of the market.

The supermarket chain says it will work with its 3,000 farmer and grower suppliers to reach the goal within nine years time.

Morrisons expects that the first products to reach net zero carbon status will be eggs as early as 2022.

This would then be followed by lamb, fruit, vegetables, pork and beef in the years to follow.

Research shows that UK agriculture currently accounts for 10 percent of all UK greenhouse gas emissions.

The NFU has asked farmers to work towards a 2040 net zero goal, with the majority of supermarkets working towards 2035.

To kickstart its net zero journey, Morrisons will this month work with farmers and growers to create net zero carbon farm ‘models’.

They will look at the emissions picture through the whole lifecycle of farm produce - from germination to leaving the farmgate.

Once a workable blueprint has been established, the models will then be shared with all of the retailer's suppliers.

The farm models will look at reducing carbon through rearing different animal breeds, using low food-mile feedstuffs and using renewable energy.

They will also look to offset carbon emissions through planting grassland and clover, restoring peatland and improving soil health.

David Potts, Chief Executive of Morrisons, said: “Climate change is one of the biggest challenges for our generation and growing food is a key contributor to greenhouse gas emissions.

"As British farming’s biggest supermarket customer, we’re in a unique position to guide our farms and help lead changes in environmental practices.

"It’s years ahead of industry expectations - and an ambitious target - but it’s our duty to do it.”

As part of the programme, Morrisons says it will work with universities, vets, farming and countryside organisations and carbon experts.

It will also work with Harper Adams University to set up the world’s first School of Sustainable Farming to offer farming training.