Lean and Green
Our environmental and sustainability story so far
We all have an obligation to ensure our carbon footprint is minimised and Natures Way Foods is constantly seeking long-term, sustainable solutions for our business processes that will look after the earth. We have been awarded the ISO 14001 award for Environmental Management Systems and have dedicated teams across the business to ensure we reach our targets. These ISO awards provide a framework for our energy management system and demonstrate our commitment to reducing environmental impact. The benefits are not only to the environment and our energy reduction schemes have resulted in cost-savings across the business. We are measured against the Food and Drink Administration’s (FDA) Climate Change Agreement and we are exceeding targets to reduce energy consumption, water usage and carbon emissions.
One example of our commitment to these principles to reduce energy usage and increase productivity was to install highly-efficient LED lighting in our manufacturing sites. The previous lighting was not only costly but one expired bulb could bring production off-line for 2-3 hours while the repair was made. The innovative, engineering team engaged a local lighting specialist and found a solution to install the new LED lights in the existing lighting housing which has made a significant reduction on our carbon footprint, production lines are more efficient and our running costs are greatly reduced. We are saving the equivalent energy of 160 homes per year and Natures Way Foods has committed to investing a further £250 million in energy reduction projects.
Many food processing companies install chemical treatment plants in order to process their waste water. However, we decided to find a more environmentally-friendly way to filter and recycle the wash water from our manufacturing units by installing a reed bed.The reed bed treats the waste wash water, which is stored in a reservoir and used by a third party to irrigate lettuce crops that come back to us. In this way, we’ve created a ‘virtuous water cycle’ that treats waste water in an ecological way and reuses it efficiently.Using water from one of our manufacturing sites, Natures Way Foods has created three wildlife ponds to support local flora and fauna, including the endangered water vole.
The raw material waste, i.e. cores, peelings, outer leaves, stalks and stems from the four NWF manufacturing sites is collected and is composted to be used as fertiliser for the fields where Natures Way Foods buys its lettuces. This is another way we have created a cycle for the goodness from the earth to return to the earth.
Natures Way Foods is very proud of the “zero to landfill” policy in place and recycle, re-use or re-distribute everything from waste metal to wellington boots to toner cartridges.
We don’t just tick the boxes when it comes to our green policies. One of the values that underpins the decision-making and business objectives at Natures Way Foods is “Proud of how we do Business” and we really are committed to a sustainable future.