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Harnessing the power of renewables – how the red meat industry is doing it min read

  • With a commitment to achieving the goal of being ‘carbon neutral by 2030’ (CN30), the Australian red meat industry is investing in renewable energy technology such as solar, wind and biomass. Not only is this helping to reduce the industry’s carbon dioxide emissions, it’s also helping Aussie farmers save money.



At a glance

  • Australian red meat is investing in renewable energy solutions as part of its commitment to achieving its CN30 vision.
  • Renewable energy sources such as solar, wind and biomass mean more efficient energy use, lower emissions and improved productivity for Australian farmers.
  • Aussie beef producer and exporter, Teys Australia, is already seeing the benefits of renewable energy in reducing emissions and cutting energy costs.


The renewable energy focus

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.

Why renewable?

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.

How a major Australian beef producer is harnessing renewable energy

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: