New five-point plan to help Scottish red meat reduce its carbon footprint


The Scottish red meat industry has set plans to produce ‘net zero’ greenhouse gas emissions by 2045, keeping the sector in line with Scottish government commitments.

The plans are revealed in a new Steak in the ground document from the Scottish Red Meat Resilience Group (SRMRG), which covers the entire supply chain, outlining five key commitments to mitigate climate change.

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“Scotland has the potential to be one of the most environmentally friendly red meat producers in the world, but we all know there is work to be done,” said Kate Rowell, President of SRMRG , as well as Quality Meat Scotland.

“We know that every company in the red meat sector is at a different stage in their environmental journey, as well as the business realities in which we operate.

“We’re also a very diverse industry – from mountain farms to auction markets and transportation to technology – so it’s not about changing a widget in a factory. It’s a longer process to make and instill changes throughout the supply chain and see results.

The five commitments are:

  1. Foster collaboration (to ensure shared learning and avoid duplication)
  2. Support all businesses in the transition (for example, helping farmers produce more of their own food, achieve earlier slaughter dates or use more green fuels)
  3. Use innovation, technology and data (including investment in genetics, feed conversion efficiency and animal health)
  4. Prioritize requalification and upskilling (broadening qualifications and developing future “ambassadors”)
  5. Build a new brand image (using TV commercials, social media and labeling to spread positive messages about red meat)

“It is imperative that we come together as an industry to play our part and not work in silos,” said Rowell.

“This is not just for the environment, but also for financial and social prosperity, which is vital for the future of our industry and rural communities in Scotland.

“The actions we take now to reduce emissions will demonstrate to our consumers how serious we are in addressing the climate challenge.

“Every little action of every individual and every company will add up to have an impact, which will be far greater than the sum of our parts. “

Scottish Red Meat Resilience Group

SRMRG includes representatives from across the supply chain including the Institute of Auctioneers & Appraisers in Scotland, Pig Industry Leadership Group, QMS, Scottish Beef Association, NFU Scotland, National Sheep Association Scotland, Scottish Association of Meat Wholesalers, Scottish Association of Young Farmers’ Clubs and Scottish Craft Butchers



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