At Freshpet, we consider every day Earth Day. This is because we’re on a mission to do the right thing – which includes working towards a cleaner, more sustainable world. To celebrate Earth Day 2022, let’s take a look at how we’re pushing the boundaries of what's possible from our kitchens to yours.
We believe in supporting local farmers whose labor and environmental practices align with our own. And when we say local, we really mean it. While 96% of our ingredients are sourced from North America, more than half of these come from farms within 200 miles of our kitchens. By sourcing locally, we can support the well-being of our communities and reduce the amount of transportation needed.
We’re also looking for innovative ways to improve the quality of ingredients we source from these local farmers. One way we’ve done this is by working with farmers to supply chickens and turkey that is Animal Welfare Certified by the Global Animal Partnership. This means that every animal lives cage-free and is raised without antibiotics. In addition to providing our birds with a happier life, this commitment helps limit the rise of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
When designing our Freshpet Kitchens, we looked for every opportunity to reduce our impact on the environment. We’re proud to say that the extra time we spent designing paid off, as all recipes from our kitchen are produced with built-in water, wind, and CO2 savings.
We recently invested in a state-of-the-art wastewater treatment plant and rainwater capture system. This allows us to harvest rainwater to irrigate the landscapes around our kitchen, drawing on our underground reservoirs that hold almost half a million gallons of rainwater—enough to irrigate 62,000 sq. ft. This new system also enabled us to filter our wastewater on-site, removing residual vegetables, meat and fat from cooking, which is then broken down by bacteria through a process known as anaerobic digestion. In 2020 alone, we removed over 200 tons of solids from our wastewater. Not only does this reduce the burden on municipal water facilities, but we estimate that this disposal method will prevent 108 metric tons of CO2e emissions compared to landfilling the same amount of waste.
In the kitchens themselves, we use electricity generated by renewable wind or solar energy, which helps to reduce our CO2 footprint and achieve our goal of carbon neutrality. In fact, in 2020 alone, our renewable energy commitment prevented 46,567 metric tons of CO2e emissions – the same as taking 10,208 cars off the road for a year!
When pet parents make the switch to Freshpet, they’re helping the planet every time they serve a meal. That’s because our packaging is engineered to keep each recipe food safe and nutritious while using as little material as possible. We use between 2-10g of packaging per 30lb, which is about 20 times less than the average wet food competitor, which uses 80-120g of packaging per 30lb dog.
Not only do we use less packaging, but the packaging we do use also contains no BPA – a known endocrine disruptor in humans – and is 100% recyclable. Thanks to our partnership with Terracycle, Freshpet parents are able to recycle plastics that local municipalities don’t accept. Simply fill out this form and we’ll send you a 10”x13” USPS postage-paid shipping envelope that you can use to send us back your used packaging. We’ll then pass it on to TerraCycle, who will recycle it into a raw material that can be used for creating everything from park benches to garden beds. How cool is that?
Curious to learn more about what we’re doing to lessen our environmental impact while giving pets the freshest, healthiest food? You can read about it here.