Predictions from the World Resources Institute indicate that world demand for animal protein will swell by 70% compared to today, placing tremendous strain on the environment and the planet’s finite natural resources.
Eggs are recognized as having a low greenhouse gas (GHG) footprint compared to meat and milk and offer an affordable, safe and accessible form of nutrition for populations worldwide. As one of the world’s leading producers of micro-nutrition for poultry diets, DSM has recently entered into a partnership with the International Egg Commission (IEC) to help strengthen the central role of eggs in providing sustainable nutrition for all within planetary boundaries.
Dr. David Nickell, Vice President Sustainability at DSM Nutritional Products, Animal Nutrition & Health, discusses DSM’s efforts to help create a more sustainable global egg industry.
At DSM we recognize the importance of eggs as a valuable component of balanced, healthy nutrition for many across the world. We also recognize the tremendous success of the egg industry in meeting the growing demand for eggs as an affordable, accessible, sustainable source of protein. While keeping up with consumer demand, the industry has also diligently reduced its GHG footprint per gram of protein by 70% over the last 50 years and now has the lowest level of all land animal protein sources. However, given that the demand for eggs has risen five times over the same period, the absolute environmental footprint of the industry has grown. For the industry to continue to grow and play an ever more important role in feeding the world’s growing population, it must do so with a lower environmental footprint – it must focus on sustainable growth and make further improvements in key areas of sustainability.
Sustainability is a core value of DSM and a core driver of our business. Within the framework of our activities in Nutrition and Health, this means that we advocate healthy, balanced and affordable diets for all. That will allow the world’s growing population to be fed using the resources available while staying within the planetary boundaries. This involves, among other things, increasing the quality and the nutritional content of food, and also of feed.
As one of the world’s leading producers of micro-nutrition for poultry diets, we want to help further improve the sustainability of the global egg industry. The challenge is to deliver the valuable nutritional benefits that eggs afford while caring for animal health and welfare and also minimizing the environmental impact of egg production. Our partnership with the IEC is therefore a very logical step. We believe that with our depth of knowledge and broad portfolio of products, solutions and services combined with the expertise of the IEC and its members, we can together create further inroads into sustainable egg production. DSM is working with the IEC on a number of initiatives as part of the Global Initiative for Sustainable Eggs (GISE), an initiative of the IEC that covers the whole egg production and consumption value chain. The GISE’s mission is to champion continuous improvements in sustainability across the egg value chain through multi-stakeholder engagement, collaboration, knowledge-sharing, sound science, and leadership. A mission which is entirely in line with DSM’s philosophy. Areas of collaboration include promoting the use of local feed ingredients, reducing direct and indirect GHG emissions, reducing nitrogen and phosphorous flows to the environment, and reducing food loss and waste through the use of innovative feed enzymes, vitamins, carotenoids and eubiotic solutions.
In addition to the GISE initiative, both organizations are actively involved in promoting the nutritional benefits of eggs and improving access to this key source of protein, particularly for populations that lack sufficient animal protein in their diet and suffer from nutrient deficiencies. DSM does this through its partnership with World Vision International and the humanitarian nutrition think tank Sight and Life while working closely with the IEC to bring more affordable and aspirational nutrition to millions of the world’s most vulnerable children.
DSM exists to create brighter lives for all. This starts with our customers, without whom we would not have a business. We offer them the world’s most comprehensive, science-based animal nutrition solutions, intelligently scaled to solve the sustainability and commercial challenges we all face in transforming the way we feed the world.
The world needs new pathways in sustainable animal protein, and DSM is at the forefront of that quest.
13 September 2019
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