Our global population is growing at a staggering rate. According the United Nations, the current global population of more than 7 billion will reach more than 8 billion in 2025 and more than 9.5 billion in 2050. Most of this growth will occur in developing regions, such as India and China, whereas population levels in developed regions, such as the United States and Europe, will remain largely unchanged or shrink. The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations estimates that demand for livestock products will continue to intensify over the decades to come. Meat consumption alone is projected to rise nearly 73 percent by 2050.
According to Henning Steinfeld, Chief of FAO's Livestock Information, Sector Analysis and Policy Branch, “this continued growth in demand will be occurring within the context of increasing competition for finite and sometimes dwindling natural resources, additional challenges posed by climate change, and the imperative of making food production much more sustainable. We need to safeguard this important food sector, and improving the efficiency of its use of natural resources and bettering its performance in terms of sustainability is key."
At JBS® & Pilgrim’s®, we believe how we feed a growing planet in a healthy and sustainable manner is the great challenge of our time. It will require each of us to do more with less, maximize our efficiencies, incorporate the latest technologies and innovations, challenge some of the misperceptions about modern agriculture and utilize our precious natural resources in a way that maximizes production while minimizing our environmental footprint. We are excited to play a key role in meeting this great challenge by working hard each day to improve our operations and provide millions of consumers with nutritious protein options each and every day.
Our first role in this tremendous undertaking is focusing on what we control – the environmental performance of our plants and facilities. It is one of our core values to comply with all applicable environmental laws and regulations and a corporate objective to practice "above and beyond" compliance in all of our business activities. As such, when our processing facilities expand, or when we see an opportunity to build a more robust, effective pollution control system, or when new permit requirements are enacted, we respond with the necessary improvements.
We look first to adopting operational improvements (e.g., source reduction, waste minimization, etc.), but also invest significant capital to make physical improvements that increase our capacity to produce quality products in a sustainable manner. Our continuous improvement efforts are led by a corporate staff of environmental professionals and the majority of our processing plants are staffed with an environmental manager, a wastewater treatment supervisor and an environmental operations team. Working together, our teams are creating a safer, more efficient and more sustainable business equipped to meet the challenges of the future.