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Jason Weller On JBS' Sustainability Commitment and Net-Zero Ambition

By Steve Wynne-Jones
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As part of our Sustainability 2023 report, ESM caught up with industry leaders across a host of leading retail and consumer goods firms to discuss their ESG achievements to date, efforts made to tackle Scope 3 emissions, and what the current cost-of-living crisis means for sustainability – both for themselves and their consumer base.

Jason Weller, Global Chief Sustainability Officer, JBS

People are focused on feeding their families on a budget at present, but sustainability remains relevant and is essential to addressing climate change. At JBS, we understand that, to be a successful business, we have to be sustainable.

We are working hard to minimise our impact across our global supply chains, in line with our Net-Zero 2040 ambition.

While inflation is impacting the food sector, our global platform helps to buffer the impact and enables us to provide multi-protein value options to our customers and cost-conscious consumers.

We don’t believe that consumers should have to pay more for sustainably produced food, so we are working hard to provide a variety of choices, be that plant-based options, like Vivera in Europe, or through a selection of protein options for every budget.

In addition, many of the improvements JBS is undertaking to enhance our sustainability and minimise our environmental footprint help us to improve our efficiency and reduce cost of production.

Internal Commitment

The internal commitment to sustainability from JBS’s leadership is clear and unquestioned, but it’s more than just words. Our global leadership team has provided $1 billion in incremental capital to assist our manufacturing plants in identifying and adopting practices to reduce emissions.

Our local plant teams around the world identify greenhouse gas emission reduction projects at the site level and propose projects to our leadership team.

More than 250 projects have been approved in a little over a year, and they all originated at the plant level.

To be successful, we have a responsibility to start with our own operations – what we directly control.

Importantly, we will continue partnering with stakeholders throughout our value chain to collaborate on emission reduction opportunities that go beyond our four walls. Producer and supplier engagement is key.

'Significant' Challenges

The challenges we face are significant: to feed a growing world population amidst a changing climate while maintaining the health and productivity of our natural resources. The only possibility of success is an ‘all of the above’ approach that expands public-private sector collaboration.

Continuing to increase public-sector investments in foundational science and R&D for new technologies, along with financial incentives for farmers and land managers to protect and enhance natural resources, will be critical for scaling adoption of climate-smart agricultural systems.

For us to be successful to feed a growing and hungry world while achieving our goals for climate change adaptation and mitigation, an integrated and collaborative approach between the public and private sectors is vital.

This article first appeared in ESM’s November/December 2022 edition.

Jason Weller, Global Chief Sustainability Officer, JBS

© 2022 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest A-brand news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.

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