Morrisons to sell carbon neutral eggs by 2022

Morrisons to sell carbon neutral eggs by 2022
© Getty Images/iStockphoto

Brown eggs on a plate

– Getty Images/iStockphoto

Morrisons has announced plans to launch carbon neutral eggs by 2022.

The supermarket said it will reduce soya feed at 10 of its egg farms, replacing it with insect-based feed and Britishbeans, peas and sunflower seeds.

The news comes after Morrisons pledged to start selling “carbon-neutral” beef by 2025 and become completely “net zero” by 2030 earlier this year.

In its announcement, the retailer said it will introduce insect “mini farms” at its free-range egg farms to feed its hens.

The insects will be fed waste from Morrisons’ own fruit and vegetable site in Yorkshire in a bid to create a “circular waste” feeding scheme. It predicts that approximately 30 tonnes of produce will be recycled every week.

Each container of the insect feed, which has been developed in partnership with agritech company Better Origin, is expected to feed 32,000 free range hens per year.

Morrisons estimated that reducing soya from the hens’ diets will remove 5,737 tonnes of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and save 56 hectares of south American land from deforestation per year.

The move is also expected to save 40 billion litres of water annually.

According to the government’s figures on greenhouse gas emissions for 2019, UK agriculture accounts for 10 per cent of all UK greenhouse gas emissions.

“Up to 70 per cent of the emissions from the UK’s supply chain is attributed to feed, of which soya is a major contributor. Soya currently accounts for 10-20 per cent of hens’ normal diet,” Morrisons said.

In its pledge to become completely net zero, the supermarket said customers could also expect to see carbon-neutral lamb, fruit, vegetables and pork in stores in the coming years.

Sophie Throup, head of agriculture at Morrisons, said the plan to reduce soya from feeds could be “the future of egg farming”.

“Reducing soya from livestock feed is one of the key challenges for farms needing to lower their carbon footprint and we wanted to help find a solution,” Throup said.

“An insect diet could suit our hens better – they seem to enjoy it – and the nutritional and added health benefits are notable. We’re also finding a good home for our fruit and veg waste.”

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