Effective environmental management is critical to the success of our business and to the achievement of our long-term sustainability goals.
Environmental Protection in China
We consider the protection of the environment to be important and have implemented measures in the operation of our business to ensure our compliance with all applicable requirements under Chinese environmental laws and regulations. We have also implemented the requirements of ISO14001 in China, which primarily relate to management of environmental impact of our operations and compliance with environmental protection laws.
To control the environment impact of our hog production and hog processing operations in China, we have primarily adopted the following environmental protection measures:
- Water. We have constructed waste water processing facilities to process the waste water from our hog production and hog processing operations. This helps us to ensure no waste water will be discharged in violation of the applicable PRC laws.
- Animal Waste. Manure and other animal waste from our hog production and hog processing operations are collected for efficient re-use as organic fertilizer. We have also established digester systems yielding biogas, which can be used for heating and/or electricity generation.
- Greenhouse Gas. To reduce our greenhouse gas emissions, we endeavor to improve nutrient absorption of the hogs at our hog production facilities by adjusting the ingredients in our feedstuffs. Our animal waste management also helps to cut methane and nitrogen emissions. We have installed biological odor control systems at our hog processing facilities to reduce environmental odor pollution.
Environmental Protection in our U.S. and International Operations
For more than a decade, we have committed to conducting business in a manner that reduces our company's environmental impacts. Over the years, we have augmented and improved our environmental management systems, enabling us to use all resources - including water, energy, and land-more responsibly.
We also set challenging targets to further elevate our performance around water, energy, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and solid waste. Not only has this made good economic and environmental sense, but our performance has also significantly improved and we have already reached some of those targets ahead of schedule.
By continuing to invest in training on environmental issues, we give our employees responsibility and autonomy to drive performance improvements on their own. Many of our environmental programs that reap the greatest benefits, both environmentally and economically, have come from individual plants or farms. Several of these initiatives have been recognized and rewarded through internal and external awards programs.
Our environmental programs in our U.S. and international operations are led by senior managers and a team of senior environmental specialists who manage its environmental programs and drive performance improvements. Each of our independent operating companies in our U.S. and international operations also has a chief environmental professional, supported by at least one senior-level environmental management. Every facility maintains at least one environmental coordinator tasked with ensuring compliance at all times. Our independent operating companies in our U.S. and international operations communicate regularly with our corporate team and provide recommendations for process improvements. At the supervisory level, our managers receive regular environmental training. Across our U.S. and international operations, more than 65 individuals provide technical expertise and resources to support Smithfield's environmental management and sustainability goals.
Read more about Smithfield Foods' environmental program at http://www.smithfieldcommitments.com/core-reporting-areas/environment/