animal-welfare

Global Investor Engagement on Meat Sourcing

First launched by the FAIRR Initiative and Ceres in 2019, the Global Investor Engagement on Meat Sourcing brings together over 90 investors with more than $11.4 trillion in combined assets to engage with six of the world’s biggest quick-service restaurant brands. In these dialogues, investors are calling on companies to undertake climate risk scenario analysis, develop strong supplier policies on climate and water, set science-based targets, and publicly disclose progress against these targets.

Latest Findings

Learn about the progress that the six target companies have made in addressing some of the most pressing climate concerns and mitigating the risks linked to water scarcity and pollution. The latest progress report was published on 30 April 2021.

5 / 6 companies

have set or committed to setting science-based targets to reduce emissions.

Background

For many fast-food companies, supply chain risks present growing challenges to supply security, sustainability ambitions, brand reputation, and financial growth. The fast-food sector plays a dominant role in feeding our global population, with around 84.8 million adults in the US (nearly one-third of the population) consuming fast food on any given day. This sector continues to expand rapidly in developed and emerging markets, with a significant portion of items sold being wholly or partially made from meat and dairy products.

Animal proteins have a significant environmental footprint across three key areas: greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, water and land use. In August 2019, the IPCC published a special report on climate change and land, arguing that the global food system not only contributes to global GHG emissions but is also vulnerable to the impacts of climate change. Such exposure can create material, operational, reputational, and market risks for the companies buying animal protein products. Agriculture and land use make up 24% of global GHG emissions and are among the biggest drivers of tropical deforestation. Rising temperatures will also impact the productivity of these companies.

Main contact: Cristina Figaredo, Research & Engagements Manager

Next Steps

While five of the six companies have shown progress by setting GHG targets, they have been much slower to address water scarcity and pollution risks among their meat suppliers.

In Phase 3, investors can request that companies commit to key interim objectives identified during Phase 2. While these objectives may differ for each company, we will broadly focus on plans to set targets related to water use and the quality of their meat and dairy supply chains. Additionally, investors will ask companies to implement a strategy to meet their emissions reduction targets and disclose a climate scenario analysis aligned with TCFD recommendations.

Resources

See our briefing on these issues to understand how climate and water risks affect quick-service restaurants, and why investors should engage on this issue.

Meat Sourcing Thumbnail
Report

The Global Investor Engagement on Meat Sourcing, initiated in 2019, consists of dialogues between six of the largest quick-service restaurant (QSR) brands and institutional…

30th Apr 2021 | FAIRR Initiative

Meat sourcing cover
Report

Growing global demand for meat and dairy products continues to place unsustainable burdens on our planet’s limited resources. Animal agriculture is linked to nearly…

27th Jan 2020 | FAIRR Initiative