American food processor and producer ADM announced today that the company has achieved carbon neutrality across its U.S. flour milling operations, becoming the first company in the industry to achieve this milestone.

According to the company, the carbon neutral status of its network of 22 mills across the country was achieved through a combination of energy efficiency projects, technology updates, and the replacement of older facilities with new state-of-the-art mills, purchase of renewable energy certificates, and sequestration of carbon dioxide at the company’s commercial carbon capture and storage facility.

Tedd Kruse, ADM’s President, Milling & Baking Solutions, said:

“Consumers increasingly expect their food to come from companies that share their values. ADM is proud of our position as a trusted and capable partner in delivering responsibly and sustainably sourced ingredients that meet heightened consumer expectations. We know that our downstream customers are interested in reducing the carbon footprint of their supply chains, and we are eager to help them meet their goals with our net carbon neutral milling network.”

ADM’s achievement comes as investors are increasingly turning their attention to addressing the climate impact of the food industry. Last week, investor engagement group Climate Action 100+ released a set of recommended investor expectations for the food and beverage sector, outlining many of the actions necessary to facilitate the transition to a net-zero economy. Recommendations included integrating supply chain climate action into corporate decision-making processes and procurement policies and incentivizing agricultural producers to reduce the climate impact of crop and livestock production, and enhancing agricultural carbon sequestration.

Food and beverage sector emissions account for about a third of global GHG emissions and are among the most difficult to address, with the vast majority coming from the supply chains of food and beverage companies.

ADM stated that further efficiencies and reductions will contribute to its “Strive 35” targets, including reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 25% and energy intensity by 15% by 2035, against a 2019 baseline.

Chris Cuddy, ADM Senior Vice President, and President, Carbohydrate Solutions said:

“Transitioning to cleaner energy is a major focus for ADM as we work toward our 2035 environmental goals and support the transition to a lower carbon economy. By lowering the emissions of our operations, we are helping our customers advance their sustainability commitments as well.”