Premier Foods to cut direct emissions by two-thirds by 2030

The business, which owns brands including Mr Kipling and Sharwoods, has received verification from the Science-Based Targets initiative (SBTi) for its new climate goals.

Meeting the goals will require Premier Foods to deliver a 66.8% reduction in its direct (Scope 1) and power-related (Scope 2) emissions this decade, with a baseline year of financial year 2021.

A 10% reduction in emissions across these scopes has already been achieved. This is partly due to accelerated efforts to improve energy efficiency, procure renewable energy and cut food waste.

Premier Foods has also set a new target for its Scope 3 (indirect) emissions; such targets are required by the SBTi for verification in line with 1.5C. The business will work to reduce Scope 3 emissions from purchased goods and services, its largest source of Scope 3 emissions, by 25% by 2030. Again, this target has a financial year 2021 baseline.

“Effective action with the potential to change the course of temperature trends across the globe is only possible with rigorous scrutiny and measurement, which is why we wanted to work with the SBTi to get our own targets validated,” said Premier Foods’ ESG director Nick Brown.

“We’ve put a lot of effort into analysing our greenhouse gas emissions and those of the firms we work with, so it’s important that we know we’re on the right track, with targets which are meaningful and will contribute to worldwide efforts. This validation gives us an important platform from which to take the next steps of our journey towards net-zero.”

edie recently interviewed Brown, who is Premier Foods’ first ESG director, for an exclusive episode of its #SustyTalks audio feature. You can stream that interview here.

Science-based targets trend

Another organisation celebrating SBTi certification this week is Osborne Clarke. The multinational law firm has received verification under the SBTi’s net-zero standard for its 2040 net-zero goal.

This standard requires businesses to work towards at least a 90% reduction in emissions across all scopes, thus ensuring that they are not over-reliant on carbon offsetting. Osborne Clarke has chosen a 2019-20 baseline for delivering this level of reduction.

Osborne Clarke had originally been working towards a 2050 net-zero target.

“In order to deliver for our clients we must first hold ourselves accountable, and we realise the original 2050 deadline was not reflective of what we can and should achieve,” said the firm’s managing partner for the UK Conrad Davies.

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