Known for its dog food, cat food, treats, and litter brands, Purina announces today it has reached its 2020 goal to achieve zero waste for disposal across all manufacturing operations and its corporate headquarters.
"Purina is passionate about pets and the planet, and sustainability is a central factor in our operations and product development," said John Bear, vice president of manufacturing. "I'm incredibly proud of the effort it took to accomplish this goal of being zero waste across our operations. This achievement is a testament to the passion and commitment of our more than 8,000 employees across the country who are working to create a better world for us to share with our pets."
Achieving zero waste for disposal means that all 21 of Purina's manufacturing sites and its St. Louis headquarters have found ways to derive benefits from materials that would have otherwise been discarded. All locations now recycle, reuse, recover, or compost waste from daily operations. In certain cases, locations also may utilize destinations that convert waste to energy to generate power. Purina products feed 49 million dogs and 66 million cats every year, so reaching 100% across all Purina brands and factories was no small feat.
The company-wide commitment was achieved thanks to local teams and local solutions. Each site began with an in-depth review to understand its waste streams. This fueled passion within the facility to identify solutions and improve processes to minimize waste generation at the source while also identifying credible vendors that could support efforts to handle remaining materials in a sustainable way. Some of the materials from Purina facilities even transform into the company's Yesterday's News alternative cat litter, which uses recycled paperboard as a key ingredient.
"Pet lovers care about how their pets' food and litter are made, and that it's done in a responsible way, and we couldn't agree more," said Gopi Sandhu, director of sustainable operations at Purina. "By focusing on reducing waste and finding beneficial uses for materials that would have otherwise been discarded, Purina employees lead the charge by driving innovation towards a more circular economy. Some of our former waste materials now become soil amendments, needed to grow our healthy ingredients. Others are converted to methane, which is then captured to fuel the types of carbon-neutral energy we increasingly rely on."
Purina is working toward a global ambition for zero environmental impact in its operations by 2030, and achieving zero waste is a significant step in that journey. Purina is also committed to sourcing ingredients responsibly, caring for water, making the packaging for all of its pet care products 100% recyclable or reusable by 2025, and acting on climate change with a goal of achieving 100% renewable electricity at all of its sites.