Welsh meat has lowest UK emissions, research claims

Welsh meat production has some of the lowest carbon emissions in the UK, a new study has claimed.

A research project, in conjunction with Bangor University, the Cambrian Mountain Initiative and the Countryside Council for Wales, covering 20 farms in the Cambrian Mountains area of mid-Wales, analysed the carbon footprint of each business.

Professor Gareth Edwards-Jones, from Bangor, said: “On average, of the 20 farms surveyed, they absorbed 58% of their local emissions footprint, with three of the farms being classified as ‘carbon negative’ – by absorbing more carbon emissions (CO2e/ha/yr) than they produced.”

James Raw, chairman of the Cambrian Mountains Lamb Producer Group said: “It’s been great to see that the red meat produced in the Cambrian Mountains is some of the greenest in the UK.”

As part of the project, each farm was given its own report, with recommendations on further reducing their operations’ carbon footprint. Simple measures included allowing a percentage of farm hedgerows to grow, rather than cutting them every year, and the Cambrian Mountain Initiative will now work with the farms to see how best to implement the recommendations.

A report of the study’s findings will be launched tomorrow (8 September) as part of HRH The Prince of Wales’ Start Festival at the National Botanic Gardens of Wales.

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