Our net-zero commitment
Globally, our climate is warming, and we all know that action is required to mitigate devastating climate change.
This means we have a responsibility to not only reduce the carbon emissions associated with our own operations but also to take action to support our customers across agriculture and amenity in their journey to net-zero.
This is not a new journey for Germinal – we take our corporate responsibilities seriously and we have been working on environmental initiatives since the late 1990s. More recently, we have committed to achieving net-zero carbon emissions by 2040 across Scope 1, 2 and the most relevant Scope 3 – in advance of the ambitions outlined at the Paris Climate Conference.
We have also committed to achieving a two-thirds reduction in carbon emissions across our business by 2030 and will continue to innovate our products and develop our knowledge so that we can support both farmers and amenity customers in their own net-zero journey.
We know that this will be challenging as we transform and find new ways to deliver for our customers. But we are committed to delivering this because we know that the consequences of failure are significant.
We also know that we need to move fast, working with others to achieve success. But that is in our DNA – we have been collaborating, investing in research and innovation, and developing and sharing our expertise for generations. We understand the benefits of building the future together.
Where will we focus our attention?
Our focus will be on two key areas:
1. Within our own business
Our business activities create carbon emissions - from our production and R&D activities to our processing, sales, marketing and administration. Put simply, we need to identify these emissions and find ways to reduce and eliminate them.
We already have several initiatives underway – from the transition of our vehicle fleet to EVs to the drive for energy efficiency and renewable energy generation at our sites, including a significant investment in solar. Our priority is to carbon footprint our business to establish our baseline performance and to identify where our major emissions lie. We will then create and publish a prioritised action list demonstrating where we will focus our attention to get to net zero.
2. Supplying solutions to others
As a supplier of forage seed to ruminant livestock farmers, we are uniquely placed to help them adapt to climate change and accelerate their own net-zero journey.
We already have well-established products that do this – from our Aber High Sugar Grass varieties that reduce greenhouse gas emissions to our forage legume varieties that reduce the number of inputs required and replace the need for imported feed with high-quality home-grown proteins.
Yet we remain committed to finding better solutions to further support farmers through our research and innovation division, Germinal Horizon, which is working with partners at IBERS and beyond to develop and refine forage products that address the needs of farmers as they work towards net zero. This includes developments to our plant breeding and management innovations that can help farmers to improve soils, enhance biodiversity and capture more carbon in soils, whilst also delivering enhanced climate resilience.
We are already working on innovations that will deliver higher nutrient use efficiency. We continue to focus on developing forages that reduce enteric emissions from ruminants, whilst delivering productivity. As well as looking at how we can help farmers get to net zero, we are focused on climate resilience, developing crops with better drought, pest and disease tolerance, whilst also supporting long term carbon storage in soil.
In addition, we have initiated and led a ‘Net Zero from Productive Grasslands’ collaboration, which sees organisations from across the industry working together to help find solutions for farmers to speed their race to zero whilst maintaining productivity and profitability.
Our amenity customers are looking for grass solutions that are more drought and disease resistant whilst needing fewer inputs. They are also seeking wildflower mixtures to improve biodiversity, as they work towards green spaces that are both climate-smart and more nature-friendly, and these developments are a core focus for our Germinal Horizon team.
Like every other organisation, we do not have all the answers. We know we need to innovate to achieve our net-zero targets and we will learn along the way. But our commitment is resolute. Once our carbon footprinting is complete we will share our results on our website and will report progress each year, disclosing our results annually along with an explanation of actions taken.
Please contact Germinal today if you have any questions regarding our climate-smart solutions for agricultural grass seed, forage seed or amenity grass seed.