Decarbonised distilling partnership to help future proof farms

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Simpsons Malt Limited and BASF Agricultural Solutions have agreed on a partnership, marking the start of a unique carbon reduction and certification programme.

Simpsons Malt has committed to achieve carbon neutral malting barley and distilling wheat production by 2030. The company has made substantial investments in Scope 1 and 2 emissions reduction across its sites, and is now looking at Scope 3 emissions.

These are predominantly generated from on-farm production and the partnership with BASF is aimed at achieving significant and lasting reductions in this area. The joint project will enable growers to implement novel interventions to reduce emissions helping to lower their environmental impact and future proof their businesses.

Ben Gothorp, Sustainability Manager at Simpsons Malt, said: “The distilling sector has ambitious climate targets and, given the strength of their brands and the storytelling that underpins them, a more sustainable, decarbonised supply chain is important to achieve and for us to be a part of.”

BASF’s role in the partnership is to record all on-farm crop management practices via its Carbon Farming Platform, to determine the impact different on-farm decisions would have on the carbon position of the final, harvested crop. BASF will validate Simpsons Malt’s work by monitoring and reporting that reduction of value chain or Scope 3 GHG emissions has been achieved. .

He added that the benefits will be gained by the whole supply chain for a sector where f greenhouse gas emission as well as the grain’s provenance, is fundamental to the integrity of the final product. “It’s all about helping farmers to build resilience in their business, more sustainable practices and to ensure that we can give full transparency to our customers.”

Joel Johnson, Business Director for BASF Agricultural Solutions UK & Ireland, said: “The drinks industry, especially whisky, is of huge importance to the UK. This partnership will demonstrate how beginning with growers, all partners are in dealing with the challenges of producing food and drink sustainably.

“Our agreement is different to many agrifood carbon-reduction programmes, because it uses the Carbon Farming Platform to not only record on-farm practices, but crucially to provide Simpsons Malt’s growers with practical guidance on how their choices – say cultivation method or fertiliser programmes – can change the farm’s carbon footprint.”

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