Valio’s Sustainability Report 2022 has been published. The report is a compilation of the achievements, goals and development targets of our ambitious sustainability work. The Sustainability Report covers current information about the progress of our climate programme, our work on biodiversity, energy efficiency at our plants, and the wellbeing of people and animal welfare.
Valio’s sustainability measures progressed purposefully during 2022. Our goal is to cut the carbon footprint of milk to zero by 2035. We are reducing emissions, growing carbon sinks and creating circular economy solutions. We are improving animal welfare, and we are working to increase biodiversity. Here are some highlights of our sustainability work in 2022.
Dairy farm emissions measured with certified Valio CARBO® Farm calculator
More than 1,900 Valio dairy farms have reported their raw milk carbon footprint to Valio with the CARBO® Farm calculator. Carbon footprint reporting covers about 60 per cent of Valio’s milk intake. When the farm-specific baseline and emissions sources are known, the measures to reduce emissions can be targeted more accurately.
Biggest energy efficiency investment in Valio’s history in Lapinlahti
The biggest energy efficiency investment in Valio’s history was completed at Valio’s Lapinlahti plant: a flue-gas condenser recovers heat from the plant’s chimney and decreases energy consumption by over 10 per cent. The heat recovery system received the “Energy Genius of the Year 2022” award.
We developed indicators to measure animal welfare
We participated in the development of a completely new set of indicators to measure the welfare of dairy farm cattle. The method monitors the welfare of calves and cows through various indicators, such as behaviour, cleanliness, nutritional status, and the prevalence of lameness and skin lesions. The set of indicators was created by animal welfare researchers from Natural Resources Institute Finland and the University of Helsinki, in cooperation with herd health veterinarians from Valio and partner organisations.
Plan to start comprehensive biogas production is progressing
Valio and energy company St1’s joint venture, Suomen Lantakaasu Oy, is planning to build the first hybrid biogas production plant complex in Upper Savo, Finland. The plan advanced significantly in 2022. In addition to the industrial-scale biogas plant in Kiuruvesi, we started planning three medium-sized biogas plants in nearby areas. To realise these four biogas plants, we received investment support of EUR 19.2 million. The Ministry of Employment and the Economy’s funding decision is conditional, as it is subject to approval by the European Commission. The aim is that in 2026 the biogas plants will be generating a total of 120 GWh of renewable liquefied biogas suitable for heavy transportation. Its energy content is equivalent to 12 million litres of fossil diesel.
New packaging suitable for cardboard recycling
We expanded the range of cardboard cups. The amount of plastic was reduced significantly in some of the Valio PROfeel® protein quark and Oddlygood® cup products. The new packaging makes it easier to recycle them as cardboard. We will continue expanding the range in 2023.
Investments in mental health
We invested in mental health by adding brief psychotherapy to our regular occupational health services in Finland. Additionally, we piloted the Auntie Solutions service, which provides personalised, low-threshold support in life’s difficult moments. As recognition of our commitment to mental wellbeing, we were designated as a “Mental Health friendly Workplace” (Hyvän mielen työpaikka®) for the second time by the MIELI Finnish Association for Mental Health.
You can read more about Valio’s sustainability actions in Valio’s Sustainability Report.