Environmental Performance 

We aim to operate our business with a strong regard for environmental sustainability. By using resources such as energy and water more efficiently, and reducing waste, we seek to improve our environmental sustainability while also controlling operating costs. We work to address environmental considerations across the life-cycle of our products, from our agricultural supply chain to how our products are packaged and transported.

Implementing our strategy, by growing our Speciality Food Ingredients business, is gradually changing the shape of our manufacturing operations: we are producing more speciality products which typically involve additional manufacturing steps compared with Bulk Ingredients products, and this can mean using more energy and/or water resources, and/or producing more waste. It is also the case that by improving overall operational efficiency in a manufacturing process, or improving in one area of environmental performance, there can be negative impacts on our performance in other areas: for example, an overall more efficient manufacturing process at our Decatur, US facility is generating more (inert) waste; and reducing air emissions can sometimes require more energy (to power air emissions control technology). We are working to mitigate such consequences through continual improvements in resource and operational efficiency,
and waste reduction programmes.

Policy and standards
Our environmental policy and standards apply to all our activities globally and we aim to integrate environmental considerations into all major decisions. We undertake environmental communication and awareness across the Group, including through induction and other training at our manufacturing facilities. Our policy is available on our corporate website, www.tateandlyle.com.

Our facilities operate under local environmental authorisations and permits and we require strict compliance with these at all times. If a site breaches an operating limit, we seek to take steps immediately to resolve the issue and
prevent reoccurrence.

Our internal environmental audit programmes confirm conformity with our management standards. Our rolling programme of external, independent environmental compliance audits assures compliance with regulatory requirements.

Within our own operations and joint ventures, we focus on those aspects of our activities that have the greatest potential impact on the environment, namely the use of energy (and consequent air emissions and carbon footprint), water use, and waste management.

Beyond our own operations we focus our attention on our agricultural raw material and ingredient supply chain, the transportation of our products to our customers, and our product packaging.

Operational performance
Our biggest challenge is that our strategy – to grow our Speciality Food Ingredients business – means producing a greater proportion of speciality ingredients, which are generally more resource-intensive to manufacture than Bulk Ingredients. We are therefore continuously working on capital projects and operational practices that help us control this in terms of our direct environmental performance; whilst also working on transport and packaging, and sustainable agriculture in our supply chain.

Energy use and carbon emissions
In calendar year 2015, compared with 2014, energy use per tonne of production increased by 1.5%; however, since 2008 we have reduced energy use per tonne of production by 5.0%. Our carbon footprint from energy use reduced by 1% per tonne of production in 2015; and since 2008 we have reduced CO2e emissions per tonne of production by 10.4%.

Examples of current projects include replacing the boiler economiser unit at our Lafayette South, US plant with a new model; and upgrading the economiser unit at the Almex joint venture, Mexico plant. These improvements will increase the energy generation efficiency and reduce the fuel use – and thereby carbon emissions – at these sites, starting in 2016.

Group greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions for the period 1 January to 31 December 2015 in tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (tCO2e) were:

  • From combustion of fuel and operation of facilities (Scope 1) – 2,159,046 tCO2e2 (2014 – 2,266,975)
  • From electricity, heat, steam and cooling purchased (Scope 2) – 1,214,254 tCO2e2 (2014 – 1,247,700)
  • In total (Scope 1 and 2) – 3,373,300 tCO2e2 (2014 – 3,514,675) which equates to an intensity of 0.372 tCO2e2 (2014 – 0.375) per tonne of production.

We have reported on all of the material emission sources required under The Companies Act 2006 (Strategic Report and Directors’ Report) Regulations 2013. 

We report GHG emissions in line with the GHG Protocol Corporate Accounting and Reporting Standard. The scope, principles and methodologies we use in reporting CR performance are provided in ‘CR Reporting Criteria Annual Report 2016’ at www.tateandlyle.com/CR2016.

Water use
Water use per tonne of production decreased by 1.4% in 2015, due to the water efficiency projects and programmes we implemented during the year, for example: in 2015 our Santa Rosa, Brazil plant achieved a 9% reduction in water use through improved water recovery and re-use, and a proportionate reduction in wastewater. Since 2008 we have reduced water use per tonne of production by 3.2%.

Waste to landfill
Waste to landfill increased by 3.7% per tonne of production in 2015. This was due to a process change at our Decatur, US facility in mid-2014 that, whilst improving overall operational efficiency, led to a significant increase in the volume of inert waste. However, excluding this process change at Decatur, waste would have decreased in 2015 versus 2014. We have been successful in several waste reduction projects during 2015, for example: at Loudon, US we are significantly reducing waste to landfill by the off-site reuse of wastewater treatment plant residuals and will see the full effect of this in the 2016 calendar year Group numbers. Overall, since 2008 waste to landfill per tonne of production has reduced by 4.6%.

1 We report environmental performance by calendar year and for all sites – both Tate & Lyle owned and joint ventures. The Eaststarch manufacturing sites in Bulgaria, Hungary and Turkey that we disposed of during 2015 are included in the data in this report up to 31 October 2015, and will be removed from the data across all years in our next (2017) Annual Report; and, we will start reporting data in our next (2017) Annual Report for the manufacturing site we acquired in Sweden in 2013, and for our 2014 Gemacom Tech joint venture in Brazil and 2014 acquisition in China, once we have two full years

of data; in line with our established methodology for separating the data of disposed sites and incorporating the data of new sites (set out at www.tateandlyle.com/CR2016).

2 Refers to 2015 data that has been externally assured by Bureau Veritas UK Ltd. Their assurance statement is at www.tateandlyle.com/CR2016.

Environmental sustainability targets and achievements
We have four medium-term environmental sustainability targets.

Target by end of 2016 Calendar year 2015 status Example

Reduce CO2e emissions from energy use by 12.5% per tonne of production (baseline year 2008)1

10.4% reduction in CO2e emissions per tonne of production versus 2008

In 2015, our Lafayette South, Indiana, US corn wet mill was awarded Energy Star certification by the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for its superior energy efficiency performance. Lafayette South is the only corn processing plant in the US to have achieved the EPA’s Energy Star certification in 2015. By increasing energy efficiency we reduce our CO2e emissions.

Implement packaging reduction programmes with customers representing >50% of sales (£) Programmes initiated with customers representing >35% of sales (£) Recent projects include reducing tertiary packaging in Europe and the US, and rationalising packaging sizes to use less packaging per unit of product.
Implement transport efficiency programmes with customers representing >50% of sales (£) Programmes initiated with customers representing >35% of sales (£)  In 2015 we developed projects with two major customers at our Westboro and Cocoa bulk trans-shipment stations in the US, where we transfer bulk product from rail tanker cars to trucks. By optimising product-type shipments we are reducing the volume of hot washwater used: achieving water use, wastewater and energy use reductions through transport efficiency.
Implement sustainable agricultural sourcing programmes for our top 20 agricultural raw materials and ingredients by volume

We are on track to surpass our sustainable agriculture target, with programmes currently being implemented for 25 agricultural raw materials/ingredients (see Our Marketplace section for more details)

Corn is by far our largest agricultural raw material by volume. We buy corn from the ‘corn belts’ of the US and Europe. We are engaging on sustainable agriculture directly with corn growers, through grower cooperatives and other grower representatives such as the US National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), and via specific projects as part of our membership of the US Field to Market programme (www.fieldtomarket.org).


1We recognise that installing new air emissions control equipment, and the manufacture of more speciality products, makes it more challenging to reduce our energy use and CO2e emissions in the medium term.

Managing safely

Water: The global challenge

Water: The global challenge

Water: The global challenge

We use large volumes of water in our manufacturing operations, so at a time of increasing pressure on global resources, and changes in temperature and rainfall patterns, it’s vital that we take a strategic and environmentally sustainable approach to our supply and use of water.

Tate & Lyle has reduced water consumption by 7% per tonne of production through water conservation, recycling and operational efficiencies. Our global plants have on-going programmes and projects for water efficiency, with targets for reduction.

We are conducting reviews of the water requirements of all our manufacturing facilities to compare them with databases of local water supplies and demand. We are also looking at projections of availability into the future, including a ‘worst case’ climate-change scenario for 2050, so that we can plan accordingly.

Tate & Lyle wins top environmental awards
The success of these policies has been vividly demonstrated in the American Mid West. In 2012, despite recent extreme drought and high temperatures, our largest US plant at Decatur, Illinois, won GE’s Return on Environment Award for decreasing water use by nearly 21 million US gallons per year, and the Proof not Promises Award for significantly improving its operational performance.