Dawn Meats sets out sustainability targets

Beef and lamb processor Dawn Meats has set the ambitious target of becoming “Europe’s most sustainable meat company”. 

In its first Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) report, it pledged to cut water and energy usage by 40% and CO2 emission intensity by 50% by 2025.

As well as these energy and emission targets, Dawn Meats’ CSR goals also aligned with the United Nation’s 17 Global Sustainable Development Goals, set out in 2015.

David O’Flynn, group head of CSR, said: “At Dawn Meats we recognise that doing the right thing will build a more robust business for the future which will benefit employees, customers and farmers. Our CSR strategy is aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals and I am very excited about what we have committed to achieve and we will engage widely to deliver on these objectives.”

According to the CSR report, its Eco Drive Initiative saw Dawn Meats’ hauliers achieve a reduction of one million litres of fuel and saving 2,500 tons of CO2 in 2016. This was achieved through staff training and the acquisition of more fuel-efficient vehicles.

In keeping with its mission to provide consistent, quality meat products from sustainable sources, Dawn Meats continued to work in 2016 supported by McDonald’s to progress research into sustainable beef production at the Newford Demonstration Farm. The farm showcases beef production utilising natural grass advantage and alternative breeds to deliver appropriate muscle size and shape for modern European consumers.

CEO Niall Browne praised the staff for the progress made so far. “None of this would be possible without the commitment of our staff,” he said. “We have a really strong CSR committee at management level, but the buy-in throughout the organisation has been a credit to every member of the team. 2025 is fast approaching, and we will continue to keep a close eye on our targets to ensure that we meet and exceed them where possible.”

Dawn Meats currently works with 5,000 British farmers, contributing over £380m to local rural economies across the UK. In the past year it has launched more than 100 new and innovative value added meat products with major European supermarket chains.

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