2018 Key Facts and Figures


decrease in greenhouse gas emission intensity from 2017-2018


decrease in electricity use intensity from 2017-2018


increase in fuel use intensity from 2017-2018


increase in water use intensity from 2017-2018

Meeting the food and nutritional needs of our growing global population in a sustainable manner is the great challenge of our time. This will require each of us to do more with less by maximizing the efficient use of our natural resources and incorporating the latest technologies, innovations and best practices across our food production systems. Pilgrim’s is committed to helping society meet this global challenge in an environmentally responsible manner by working hard to improve the efficiency of our operations, minimize our environmental footprint and provide consumers with nutritious protein options each and every day.

Our vision is to be an industry leader in sustaining air, water and land by minimizing the resources needed to produce quality protein products and reducing the waste generated during our production processes.

To continue to reduce our environmental impact and reaffirm our commitment to minimize the resources needed to produce quality protein products, we have set aggressive 2020 goals for our U.S. business as a part of our Sustainable Management System.



Reduce water use intensity by 10%. From 2015 to 2018, our water use intensity has increased 13%.


*Goals set based on 2013, 2014, 2015 average baselines for our U.S. facilities


Energy & Emissions

11% reduction in natural gas usage intensity. Working toward a goal of 14%.

13% reduction in electricity use intensity. We’ve exceeded our goal of 12%.

20% reduction in GHG emissions. We’ve exceeded our goal of 14%.


*Goals set based on 2013, 2014, 2015 average baselines for our U.S. facilities

Our Management Approach

As a food company that relies on natural resources to produce our products, our understanding of and commitment to environmental stewardship has always been a part of who we are. Pilgrim’s senior leadership is committed to making sure that protection of the environment is firmly embedded in our culture. Our management approach is focused on operational efficiency, innovation and compliance with applicable environmental laws and regulations. We promote a model of continuous improvement and recognize that environmental protection and resource conservation provide value and security to current and future generations.

Our internally audited Environmental Management System (EMS) is based on the specifications of ISO 14001, yet tailored to enable our businesses to most effectively achieve our goals of protecting the environment. The EMS directs our environmental teams to recognize the environmental aspects and impacts of their specific facility, establish objectives and targets to reduce the potential impacts, assign environmentally-minded roles and responsibilities to our team members, identify team members whose responsibilities may impact the environment and provide them the appropriate training and standard operating procedures, implement an efficient monitoring and measurement program for each environmental task and routinely communicate our successes and opportunities to all involved team members. In addition, Pilgrim’s Moy Park facilities are ISO 14001 accredited according to the EMS and ISO 50001 standards.  

To encourage the sharing of best management practices across facilities, our Pilgrim’s business units use an internal reporting method to compare similar facilities. These reports are generated and reviewed weekly or monthly, depending on the business unit, by the environmental management teams and provided to senior management to monitor progress toward goals.

Environmental Management Policy

We have implemented an extensive environmental management program focused on upholding environmental compliance, minimizing our environmental footprint and increasing the efficiency of our operations to produce more product with fewer resources. Commitment to the Pilgrim’s Environmental Policy is a shared responsibility of all team members. The policy is supported and reinforced by Pilgrim’s executive management, overseen and governed by our environmental teams and implemented across the organization through the direct support of in-plant personnel and all Pilgrim’s associates. Pilgrim’s is committed to:

  1. Preventing pollution and protecting the environment
  2. Managing all of our operations in accordance with environmental laws and regulations
  3. Continually improving environmental performance by setting realistic and achievable targets
  4. Establishing and maintaining an environmental management program that:
    1. Monitors environmental compliance
    2. Strives for operational excellence through benchmarking and goal-setting to identify and implement actions that close performance gaps and continually improve our operations
    3. Standardizes our work through policies, processes and best management practices
    4. Educates team members to implement environmental policies, processes and best management practices
    5. Effectively implements and maintains environmental processes through capital improvements and proper repair and maintenance
    6. Validates our processes through routine tracking and assessments

Read Our Environmental Policies

Ownership and Support

We have created resilient environmental management structures that encourage accountability and promote ownership within our environmental and operational teams. Almost every Pilgrim’s facility has a full-time environmental manager who oversees the environmental requirements and performance of the facility. In general, each environmental manager reports to the facility manager and receives support from corporate environmental teams. The corporate environmental teams oversee the environmental performance of multiple facilities and provide individual facility support by sharing best management practices and offering assistance to address specific issues, should they arise.

The corporate environmental teams generally report to the head of engineering for each business unit, who either reports to the head of operations, directly to the president of the business unit or to the CEO.

These management structures allow for ownership of environmental compliance at the facility level with strategic regional and corporate support and oversight at the highest levels of our organization. We believe this resilient structure of local ownership, coupled with senior-level support, has led to our strong environmental results and improvements over time.

Our 2018 Stories

Learn more about how our facilities and partners are helping us achieve our sustainability goals.

Environmental Care with LEGO© SERIOUS PLAY©

Pilgrim’s Mexico

In 2018, Pilgrim’s Mexico held an environmental management workshop lead by LEGO® Serious Play® for team members from different processing plants, hatcheries, and feed mills to receive training on the direct impact of industry on nature. The LEGO® Serious Play® Method requires participants to build their own models in response to the facilitator´s questions using…

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2019 Environmental Recognition Awards


Twelve Pilgrim’s production facilities received Tier III NAMI 2019 Environmental Recognition Awards for their 2018 environmental efforts and achievements. 2019 Award Recipients Arcadia, WI; Canton, GA; DeQueen, AR; Ellijay, GA; Gainesville, GA; Guntersville, AL; Mayfield, KY; Mt. Pleasant, TX; Moorefield, WV; Russellville, AL; Sanford, NC; Sumter, NC The Environmental Recognition Awards were developed by the…

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Map of the United States of America with a location pin indicating Carrollton, Georgia

Awarded for Excellence in Pollution Prevention

Pilgrim’s USA

In 2018, the West Georgia Regional Local Emergency Planning Committee (LEPC) presented Pilgrim’s Carrollton production facility with the Sixth Annual LEPC Environmental Excellence Award in recognition of the facility’s civic and corporate environmental leadership rooted in performance and action. Acting as liaison between industry and emergency response, the West Georgia Regional LEPC works to evaluate…

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Reducing Water and Energy

Pilgrim’s Moy Park

The Pilgrim’s Moy Park Dungannon team focused on environmental and process efficiency to reduce water use and thermal energy savings. The team installed a sub-metering system that allows for continuous water use monitoring in real time for all departments in the facility. In addition, commissioning valves were put in on large water use processes to…

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