Dean Foods Sets 2020 Environmental Sustainability Goals

DALLAS – Dean Foods today announced a revised set of environmental sustainability goals to better define its environmental impact and increase transparency. The new 2020 goals expand the company’s focus to more areas of sustainability, align with the broader dairy industry timing for greenhouse gas reductions, and better reflect customer expectations and consumer demands.

The goals are a revision of the company’s previous 2013 Environmental Roadmap, which called for reductions in greenhouse gases (20 percent), water usage (30 percent), and solid waste (30 percent). The original goals have been expanded, adding more achievable timelines and greater detail on energy usage, distribution fleet emissions, and recycling. The company will also set new goals for zero-waste plants, packaging, and sustainable supply by the end of 2013.

The expansion aligns with the Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy’s comprehensive industry goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions 25 percent by 2020. At its current pace, the company would miss its 2013 greenhouse gas and water goals due to unforeseen volume declines and more water-intensive processes from an expanding product portfolio, a common occurrence across the food industry. At the same time, the company has reduced solid waste 21 percent, increased recycling by more than 50 percent, and exceeded – two years early – a key sub-goal of reducing distribution fleet carbon dioxide equivalent emissions by 50,000 metric tons. The new 2020 goals create aggressive but achievable timelines for reduction efforts across the company, and new efforts to reinvigorate activities around these reductions began in July 2012.

“We set aggressive sustainability goals for our business in 2008, and we’re proud of the progress we’ve made so far,” said Gregg Tanner, President of the company’s Fresh Dairy Direct business unit and Chief Supply Chain Officer for Dean Foods. “We are committed to speaking openly and transparently about our progress and shortfalls, and then realigning on new, expanded, and more accurate and achievable goals.”

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