LONDON – The Farm Animal Investment Risk and Return (FAIRR) initiative recently released a report examining the biodiversity impacts of waste mismanagement and nutrient pollution from meat processing around the world.

The organization looked at 10 leading animal agriculture firms to tackle the matter. Some of the companies listed by FAIRR included JBS S.A., Tyson Foods Inc., Cranswick PLC, BRF, Maple Leaf Foods Inc., Seaboard Foods LLC, Hormel Foods Corp., Muyuan Foods in China, Charoen Pokphand in Thailand and WH Group which owns Smithfield Foods. 

Investors ask each company to disclose a full assessment of manure management in the supply chain. It also wanted to know which action they are taking to address associated risks like nutrient pollution.

FAIRR estimated in its report that more than 3 billion tons of waste are produced annually from animal farms. 

“The meat industry’s failure to manage manure effectively is threatening both biodiversity and the bottom line for investors,” said Jeremy Coller, chair and founder of the FAIRR initiative and chief investment officer for Coller Capital. “The practice of dumping excessive amounts of manure and allowing nutrients to pollute waterways is killing off marine life and endangering public health.”

Coller added that investors know the regulatory risk for companies with initial steps taken in the United States and the Netherlands. 

“Moreover, companies are missing an opportunity to be part of a global solution by creating valuable fertilizer from waste, at a time when it has never been more expensive to procure,” he said.

The report also named two global fertilizers companies, Darling Ingredients Inc. and Yara International. 

The organization noted that fertilizer prices have hit record highs since the start of the war in Ukraine, which emphasized the need for “better circular use of animal waste.”

The group said this is the first of several biodiversity reports, creating $44 trillion of economic value worldwide. 

More details and information about FAIRR and the report can be found here.