CN30 is an ambitious target for the Australian red meat industry, with stakeholders at every level being called upon to help Aussie red meat become a global leader in sustainable food production. The Carbon Neutral by 2030 Roadmap outlines one of the key areas of focus as supporting red meat producers in implementing viable renewable energy technologies.
Renewable energy, such as solar, wind and biomass, can help minimise carbon dioxide emissions by reducing the use of fossil fuels in grazing management, lot feeding and processing operations. It can also help red meat producers cut their energy costs, improving the long-term sustainability and productivity of their businesses.
Engineering firm, All Energy Pty Ltd, has teamed up with MLA Donor Company (MDC) to create myenergy.tech, a free digital tool that makes it easy for farms, feedlots and processors to understand the costs and benefits of renewable, energy-saving technologies. With beef and lamb production, lot feeding and red meat processing (excluding the low temperature-controlled supply chain, or cold chain) spending an estimated $1.6 billion per year on energy – and with global energy prices having increased to levels not seen in decades – the cost benefit of switching to renewable energy is clear.
For Teys Australia, sourcing energy from renewables has become a key priority for the global beef producer and exporter. The company operates three feedlots, six beef processing plants, two food manufacturing facilities, a hide processing site and a centralised distribution facility on Australia’s eastern seaboard. They aim to reduce carbon intensity by 20% over a five-year period to 2023 (baseline year FY2017) and ensure that at least 30% of their energy comes from renewables by 2023.
In 2018, Teys was able to halve the grid power consumption of their Darling Downs feedlot through a combination of solar and energy efficiency. And in 2019, they announced their plan to make their Wagga processing plant completely energy self-sufficient by implementing renewable technologies such as solar, storage, solid waste digestion and biomass boilers.
Find out how Teys Australia uses solar to produce around 50% of their energy needs at their Darling Downs feedlot:
The Australian red meat industry is dedicated to reducing its waste, and has a set a long-term goal of zero waste discharge. Zero waste revolves around redirecting waste towards recycling, beneficial re-use or new value-add by-product streams.
The Australian red meat industry is investing in research and development aimed at helping red meat producers adopt viable renewable energy.