Glanbia corporate social responsibility includes appropriate business conduct and accountability, fairness and respect for employees and business partners, achieving a strong environmental, health and safety performance and local community involvement. Our goal is to build a sustainable business that contributes to the communities where we operate.
Management of our environmental footprint is critical to the long-term sustainability of our business and is a core element of our strategic priority of achieving operational excellence. We seek to continually improve our environmental performance by asking ourselves the question “how can we do more with less?” This involves ongoing assessment of our manufacturing processes as well as our supply and distribution chains. In particular, we focus on our consumption, direct and indirect, of water, energy and waste. Importantly, this focus on environmental performance also benefits our financial performance through increased efficiency and waste reduction and is embedded in our GPS system which is being rolled out across the Group.
Glanbia operates a number of businesses each with distinct characteristics. The key focus of our environmental efforts, in particular in the context of water, energy and waste consumption are our manufacturing focused businesses including US Cheese, Customised Premix Solutions and two of our strategic partnerships, Southwest Cheese and GIIL. All of our manufacturing plants associated with these businesses meet the highest regulatory standards in their respective jurisdictions and the 2012 environmental highlights for each of these businesses are outlined here.
Our wholly owned whey processing operations, the output of which is commercialised by Ingredient Technologies, are managed by the US Cheese team and therefore, from a manufacturing and environmental assessment perspective, all cheese and whey plants are evaluated on a combined basis. US Cheese includes three plants in total, all of which are located in Idaho; a cheese facility in Twin Falls, a cheese and whey facility in Gooding and a whey facility in Richfield.
US Cheese, in 2011, was the first of our business units to implement the GPS system and continues to generate significant benefits from the programme. In 2012, energy usage per litre of milk processed declined by 5% while water usage intensity, as measured by litres of water consumed per litre of milk processed declined by 8%.
Customised Premix Solutions
While energy and water consumption by Customised Premix Solutions is relatively low compared to our dairy processing facilities, it remains a focus of management and 2012 was a very successful year in this regard. Energy consumption per kilogram blended fell by 14% in 2012 which follows a 20% decline in 2011. Water consumption per kilogram blended fell by 3%.
Southwest Cheese operates a single large scale plant in Clovis, New Mexico. Having been commissioned in 2006 and with a 40% capacity increase in 2010, the plant operates at a high level of efficiency. Nonetheless, energy and water consumption remains a key focus of management. In 2012, energy usage per litre of milk processed declined by 16% while the number of litres of water consumed per litre of milk processed declined by 11%.
Glanbia Ingredients Ireland (“GIIL”)
In 2012, GIIL, at its two processing facilities in Ballyragget and Virginia, continued to build on the significant progress made over recent years in respect of its energy and water consumption with declines of 1% and 2% respectively. Other key environmental highlights for GIIL in the year include:
Glanbia's three-year partnership