Broomfield, CO—Horizon Organic has announced a commitment to become carbon positive by 2025, which would make it the first national dairy brand to become carbon positive across its full supply chain, according to a press release. In other words, it will surpass carbon neutrality, actively removing emissions from the atmosphere. In the U.S., the release notes, agriculture contributes approximately 10% of total greenhouse gas emissions.
Horizon will start with its Growing Years whole milk half gallons, which will be the brand’s first certified Carbon Neutral product by the end of 2021; it will continue to advance product certifications in direct partnership with family farms through 2025. It has already begun the certification process with The Carbon Trust.
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Horizon is finalizing its first life-cycle assessment, which will guide specific milestones towards the carbon positive achievement. The brand will focus on the following areas as it becomes carbon positive:
Supporting family farmers. Horizon is launching the Horizon Farmer Investment Fund to support farmers, particularly as they work to implement more sustainable farming practices. The launch will open with a $15 million investment by way of grants and low- and no-cost loans that will provide the capital, training, technology, and tools necessary to ensure a sustainable future.
Instituting carbon-reducing on-farm practices Horizon’s on-farm actions will include energy efficiency, soil regeneration, and cow feed and diet management. The brand already has in place a five-year partnership with EcoPractices to conduct in-depth sustainability and soil health analysis, in order to track and inform the brand’s soil health efforts.
Off-farm actions. The brand is optimizing transportation and distribution, and investing in renewables, emission reductions for its manufacturing facilities, and packaging improvements. 100% of Horizon Organic’s beverage cartons will be certified by the Forest Stewardship Council by the end of 2020.
Investing in carbon reductions and offsets. Horizon is going to co-create new projects that generate carbon offsets and removals, largely around U.S.-based agriculture. Those projects include restoring prairie lands and forestlands; Horizon will also evaluate and pursue new technology and partnerships on an ongoing basis to understand breakthrough opportunities that could make a difference.
Mariano Lozano, CEO of Danone North America, said in the release: “Climate change is the challenge of our lifetime—we are out of time on this issue—food and farming must evolve. This includes helping our farmer partners implement breakthrough regenerative soil practices, cow feed and diet management programs, and energy efficiency. These steps and more will play a significant role in helping Horizon Organic become carbon positive.”