Climate protection in animal husbandry
3.79 percent of all greenhouse emissions in Germany come from agriculture as a result of producing meat, milk, butter, eggs and cheese for us all. We work together with our partners from animal husbandry in order to continuously improve the climate footprint of meat production – for climate-friendly animal husbandry and meat production.
Meat is an important source of nutrients which provides the body with essential proteins, vitamins and minerals. However, manufacturing this valuable food requires resources.
Animal husbandry and feed production in particular generate the most emissions that have implications for the climate. This includes methane emissions from animal husbandry, spreading manure, and nitrous oxide emissions from soil used in agriculture.
Since 1990, German agriculture as a whole has already reduced its greenhouse gas emissions by more than 20%, whilst simultaneously increasing production quantity.
Looking further ahead
All measures are in vain if meat is not appreciated as it should be. It is one of our social tasks to best use the valuable resources resulting from the carcasses and to avoid waste.
First of all, we ensure that as much of the entire carcass is used as possible. The export of pork from the agricultural nation of Germany also successfully helps to sell parts of the pig that are a delicacy in other parts of the world, but which are not eaten in Germany. For example, pigs’ trotters, stomachs, ears, veins, cartilage and much more.
We also want to implement hygiene standards that are as high as possible in order to minimise germ contamination on the meat and enable a long shelf life.
Marketing of a pig
The bases for the further reduction of emissions from animal husbandry are there.
It is our goal to implement technology available on the market more widely in cooperation with our partners. In this regard, there are hurdles to overcome and initiatives to set. We are thus committed to politics and, by implementing successful pilot projects, establish facts that pave the way for further developments. With the open-stall system, we support the separation and composting of the faeces and urine and, with the preparation of the manure, we see this as a substitute for mineral fertiliser. By 2030, we hope to completely do without South American soya and also to half the share of soya in piglet and pre-fattening food. The final fattening food should contain no soya at all.
Tönnies is looking forward to seeing the results of work carried out by researchers from the University of Kiel in a major joint project with the Association for Technology and Structures in Agriculture (KTBL https://www.ktbl.de/themen/emimin), which looks at how dung-urea separation systems impact emissions. This creates a useful database for new stall buildings and approval processes. The project is currently being conducted in barns at the research institutes.
Tönnies is committed to the integration of resource-saving processes in programmes for sustainably produced meat. The expectation here is that, in addition to issues of animal welfare, elements of resource protection can also be given reasonable consideration. The Tönnies Group is actively involved with the development work carried out by the Kompetenznetzwerk Nutztierhaltung (network for improvements in animal husbandry – Borchert Commission) and supports work towards a national consensus on livestock.
To slow down the large-scale death of farming, we also want to create future perspectives for our agricultural producers. The next generation of farmers deserves the chance to continue the work of previous generations of their family with optimism and without fearing for their existence. Furthermore, Tönnies strives for an improvement in knowledge of the importance of animal production for cohesion and economic power in rural areas.