JBS Foods contracts renewable energy to power operations in two subsidiaries

BRAZIL – JBS Foods, a leading global food company, is fast-tracking on its goal to become net-zero by 2040 by contracting renewable energy from a new 5.2-MWp solar farm in the state of Sao Paulo.

The food manufacturing giant will use this renewable energy to power its two subsidiaries which include Swift and Seara companies.

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The Ambar Saltinho photovoltaic (PV) plant in the Sao Paulo countryside was recently opened by energy firm Ambar Energia, for which this was its first solar farm project.

Ambar Energia is part of Brazilian private investment holding J&F Investimentos SA, which also has a stake in JBS.

The Saltinho solar farm is composed of a total of 9,408 PV panels, arranged across four sections that can generate enough power to meet the consumption needs of some 2,800 homes, according to JBS.

At present, JBS noted that 65 of Swift’s shops already consume solar power, through rooftop-mounted systems among others.

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As for Seara, the meat processor procured Saltinho’s power for its integrated companies as part of the plan to reduce its scope 3 emissions as well as help it cut power bills by 20%.

Additional sustainability targets of JBS include reducing scope 1 and 2 GHG emission intensity by 30 percent, reaching 60 percent in renewable electricity usage, and reducing water use intensity by 15 percent, respectively by 2030.

The company is also targeting to eliminate illegal deforestation from the Brazilian cattle supply chain, including suppliers of suppliers, in the Amazon and other Brazilian biomes by 2025.

JBS plans to invest US$1 billion in emission reduction projects in company facilities over the next decade and US$100 million by 2030 in R&D projects to assist producer efforts to strengthen and scale regenerative farming practices.

In 2020, JBS USA noted to have completed its 2020 sustainability goals, established in 2017, exceeding targets for greenhouse gas emission intensity, electricity use intensity, water use intensity, and safety.

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During that period, the company reduced its greenhouse gas emission intensity by 20 percent, reduced electricity use intensity by 14 percent, reduced water use intensity by 10 percent, and improved its safety index performance by 56 percent.

However, according to the Institute for Agriculture and Trade Policy (IATP), a sustainability non-profit organization, the Brazil-based meat giant increased its emissions by 51% in five years.

In its report, IATP said the number of cattle in JBS’s supply chain increased by 54%, pigs by 67%, and chickens by 40%.

The IATP called on “JBS’s investors and customers to divest and stop sourcing” from the company citing that JBS continues to make climate claims to investors, even as the company massively increases its emissions.

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