Smithfield Foods will begin conducting a comprehensive watershed and water-use analysis across its operations to increase efficiencies and ensure sustainable sourcing and practices companywide. As part of the practice, the company will also adopt water stewardship standards by 2025 to support its long-term water management goals.
"Responsible stewardship of water and other finite natural resources is an essential component of sustainable food production and critical to our role as an environmentally conscious protein company," says Stewart Leeth, chief sustainability officer for Smithfield Foods. "Because our business operations rely on water to produce food and support animal care, we continually assess our water use and pursue innovations that further conserve resources and implement the best available technologies."
This initiative increase efforts Smithfield has previous undergone over the last decade to reduce water use across its farms and production facilities. Additional efforts to conserve water include: regulating the application of nutrients on company and contract hog farms, introducing grain supply chain innovations and partnering with local water authorities to reduce impacts of groundwater use.
- The exhaustive water conservation effort will refresh prior water assessments and inform updated strategies related to water usage, quality and supply availability on all company-owned and contract hog farms, in manufacturing facilities and across grain supplier operations beginning with Smithfield's domestic portfolio.
- In its agricultural operations, water is critical for Smithfield's animals to drink and for sanitation, cooling and biosecurity.
- Smithfield's Water Policy outlines company commitments to proactively address water quality, use and conservation efforts in cooperation with environmental consultants, experts and regulatory agencies across local communities.