The Shout Magazine (New Zealand)

New Zealand’s largest beverage company goes carbon zero

Lion New Zealand has announced it has become New Zealand’s first large-scale beverage company to be Toitū carbonzero certified.

Through its partnership with Toitū, Lion has undertaken an intensive audit, designed to accurately measure its operational greenhouse gas emissions and put in place strategies to manage and reduce Lion’s carbon footprint each year.

Lion established a ‘whole family’ carbon reduction approach across its New Zealand manufacturing, including The Pride and Little Creatures Brewery in Auckland, Panhead Brewery and Havana Coffee Works in Wellington, Wither Hill’s Vineyard and Winery in Blenheim, Speight’s and Emerson’s Breweries based in Dunedin, along with its nationwide chain of Liquor King stores. 

Rory Glass, Managing Director of Lion, says Lion’s carbonzero certification marks the business’ continued effort to reduce its footprint and develop a clear pathway towards decarbonisation.

“Our certification will require the business to reduce emissions year on year, measured against set targets, one of which is our commitment to running all of our Lion sites across the country on renewable electricity by 2025,” he says.

As a final lever, and where emissions cannot be reduced at this time, Lion has purchased verified carbon credits from two offsetting initiatives; a forest protection and regeneration project in the South Island and a renewable energy farm in India.

Kat McDonald, Lion Sustainability Manager, says through the certification audit it became quite clear that Lion couldn’t improve what it couldn’t see, highlighting the need for a metering system at its major manufacturing sites.

“Once we knew what the major emission sources were, we could establish weekly energy reports working against our targets for optimisation.

“In the last year alone, our energy expenditure per litre of beer went down by 4% and will continue to reduce in 2021,” she says.

Alongside certification, Lion has also signed up to EECA’s Energy Transition Accelerator (ETA) Programme which assists large energy users in developing a strategic long-term road map to decarbonisation by focusing on energy efficiency, emerging technology, renewable fuels and electrification of process heat.

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