Annual and Sustainability Report | 2019
Itapiranga (SC)

Our Business
Seara

Sustainability;
Environmental stewardship

In environmental stewardship, Seara, always based on its Environment Policy, works to keep the matrix of environmental aspects and impacts up to date, along with its environmental programs, in an effort to monitor them in an ongoing and efficient manner. Investments in this area in 2019 totaled R$ 136.2 million, 37% more than in 2018.

The Company has an environmental policy and relies on a management system and indicators to guide development of short- and long-term strategies. Just like at JBS Brasil, Seara has one production unit, in Itapiranga (SC), which is ISO 14001-certified. This facility serves as a reference for the others, which replicate the main projects and actions developed at this production unit in their own activities, whenever applicable. They undergo an internal audit process in order to monitor compliance with best practices and performance of environmental indicators.

Seara developed a platform to assist in managing environmental indicators. In 2019, in order to take another step forward in managing and increasing the transparency and reliability of information supplied to the market, water consumption, energy, greenhouse gas emissions (scopes 1 and 2) and production data were audited by SGS, a Swiss company that is a world leader in inspection, verification, testing and certification , according to standards established by ISO 14064-1: 2007 and the Brazilian GHG Protocol Program.

Practices such as only acquiring firewood from registered suppliers, prohibiting receipt of old-growth timber, controlling energy indicators, greenhouse gas emissions, water and water reuse, in addition to the quality of effluents treated, as well as preferring use of biofuel, are among the main aspects of Seara’s environmental management.

Wastewater treatment plant
in Amparo (SP)

Water and effluents

Water is essential to production at Seara, making it a priority. In particular, the Company monitors risks related to water volume and quality: reduced availability makes it necessary to have tighter operational controls to ensure quality standards. For effluents, the challenge is guaranteeing the discharge standards for treated effluents, using appropriate operation of treatment stations.

Seara also works with daily goals for water consumption per ton of product, which are revised annually. Furthermore, work is done to identify opportunities to reuse water in its processes, aimed at lowering the demand for water collection. In 2019, Seara reused 1.7 billion liters of water, 31% more year-over-year. This amount is equal to 680 Olympic-size swimming pools.

A specific checklist provides guidelines for surveying any points of water waste and for respective solutions, with action plans that stipulate responsible parties and timeframes. Reuse is one possibility; however, because effluents come from food processing, initiatives for reuse must be authorized by the Federal Inspection Service (SIF). One example of projects in this area are reverse osmosis, reuse in vacuum pumps and reuse of water used to clean sieves.

Effluent treatment, another fundamental theme in managing water resources at Seara, received investments of R$ 13.3 million, 108% more year-over-year. With this structure and funding, Seara guarantees that 83% of the volume of water captured and used by the Company is returned to the environment in compliance with quality and safety standards.

In order to reduce the volume and guarantee the quality of effluents produced, Seara invests in procedures to lower the organic load in effluents, using appropriately sized treatment systems that guarantee maximum efficiency. Floater systems and anaerobic ponds help to bring down emissions coming from effluents. At the Três Passos and Seberi production units, both located in Rio Grande do Sul, biodigesters are used to burn methane gas in the boiler and to flare methane gas, respectively.

Climate Change

As part of JBS, Seara monitors, accounts for and reports its greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. Find out more in Commitment to sustainability/Environmental stewardship/Climate change . In an effort to reduce its carbon footprint, the Company invests in developing innovations and in adopting best practices in its operations.

In 2019, Seara lowered its scope 1 GHG emissions (direct emissions) by 21% in relation to the previous year, considering its emissions per metric ton of product produced.

Energy

Energy management at Seara is monitored by a multidisciplinary team of engineers who work in partnership with plant teams and the corporate area, assessing performance and adopting strategies to bring down consumption and make the Company more energy efficient.

Seara sets individual annual targets to reduce energy, by branch, with monthly supervision by the executive board and daily management by units. Electricity purchased on the open and incentivized markets as well as the use of biomass to generate steam are some of the actions aimed at diversifying the Company’s energy mix.

Seara’s energy matrix includes 91.7% renewable energy, considering direct energy use (electricity, thermal energy and use of fuel in general). If we consider fuel use in boilers to generate thermal energy, renewable energy use rises to 97.4%. In 2019, investments of R$8 million were made in energy efficiency projects at the Company.

 

Waste management

Based on the guidelines of specific JBS policies for this theme and by the National Solid Waste Policy, Seara aims to reduce waste generated and consequently sent to industrial landfills. This necessarily includes application of the Company’s critical suppliers program, which establishes correct disposal of all waste generated by suppliers and carriers along with final waste disposal. Centers at Seara units receive waste and correctly dispose of it, including recyclable waste, which is sorted and sold to specialized companies.

With the goal of enhancing this procedure, in 2019, mapping began on Seara production units qualified to receive JBS Ambiental projects, which will make it possible to better sort and use waste, along with applying specialized management of this topic.

In the area of reverse logistics, the pallet center manages the processes involved in collecting, purchasing, shipping and supplying plants with this material. The result of this initiative is wider reuse of wood through actions such as changing the logistics system to reduce shipping, performing supply studies for plants, collecting pallets from customers in various regions in Brazil and improving accountability management with carriers.

At Seara, 286,000 metric tons of industrial waste were reused for composting, recycling, energy reuse and cogeneration, accounting for over 70% of total waste generated. Of this total, 1,000 metric tons were used to generate energy. In addition, Seara lowered waste generation by 17% in 2019, compared to the previous year. In 2019, Seara invested over R$ 440,000 in waste management improvements.

 

Packaging

Packaging is an essential item when it comes to guaranteeing quality and to the consumer experience with Seara products, since it is responsible for providing food with safety and protection from the moment it is prepared to consumption. Nevertheless, its disposal may create an environmental liability that should be proactively managed in compliance with local and national laws.

To make this possible, part of the Company’s investment in research and development is aimed at finding ways to reduce and optimize packaging use, particularly when it is not in direct contact with food, helping to lower waste volumes and the costs associated with this.

It is important to note that approximately 80% of packaging volume for Seara products come from renewable sources.

Cidade+ Program

Seara and JBS Brasil support the work of the Cidade+ Program, which is developed and managed by the Recicleiros NGO, that advises municipal governments on implementing smart selective collection while at the same time allowing companies to comply with the requirements of the National Solid Waste Policy, which requires that they invest in reverse logistics actions for post-consumer packaging.

The values espoused by Cidade+ become the subject of training for municipal managers, so they can be able to implement and manage their selective collection programs.

Erich Burger
Recicleiros Institutional Director

JBS, through Seara and JBS Brasil,

supports our selective collection and recycling programs, which should serve nearly 1 million new people per year. Four million will have access to sustainable channels to dispose of solid urban waste and 2,000 qualified jobs will be created for people in vulnerable situations by the end of 2023.”

Map of Cidade+ Program operations

Download
the report