July 17, 2023
Washington, D.C. – Today, the Corn Refiners Association (CRA) released its Life Cycle Analysis (LCA), providing a snapshot of the corn refining industry’s sustainability achievements and goals. The LCA evaluates the environmental impacts of certain products derived from corn refining across their lifetime, from the beginning stages of agricultural production to the final stages of facility operations. This farm-to-manufacturer assessment delves into a variety of environmental impacts, including global warming potential, fossil fuel consumption, energy demand, and land use.
Corn refiners are poised to significantly reduce their environmental impact over the next decade. In the previous 10 years, industry members not only set ambitious sustainability goals, but many of these benchmarks were met ahead of schedule and exceeded expectations.
“The LCA report reinforces our industry’s commitment to sustainability and implementing an integrated, upstream approach to environmental stewardship,” said John Bode, President and CEO of the Corn Refiners Association.“The agriculture industry understands that there is not a singular solution to our climate challenges and instead approaches sustainability with dynamic, ambitious efforts. Corn refiners are setting an example that can work as a sustainability model for the wider agriculture industry.”
Corn refiners are primarily engaged in sustainability initiatives to tackle two major factors contributing to industry environmental impact: corn production and emissions from energy consumption. Nearly every CRA member company has producer outreach or engagement programs at various levels to improve corn sourcing sustainability. This ranges from Cargill’s commitment to advance regenerative agriculture practices across 10 million acres of farmland to Ingredion’s work with the Sustainable Agriculture Initiative Platform to certify sustainable production. Furthermore, CRA member companies’ efforts to shift from higher-impact to lower-impact energy sources have made great reductions in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions throughout the refining process.
Some key achievements over the past six years include:
Corn refiners are also on track to achieve crucial sustainability goals over the next decade. Some of these goals include:
Through its commitment to innovating and growing the bioeconomy, the corn refining industry plays a critical role in today’s leading climate solutions. View the full LCA report and learn more about CRA’s climate change policy principles.
The Corn Refiners Association (CRA) is the national trade association representing the corn refining industry of the United States. CRA and its predecessors have served this important segment of American agribusiness since 1913. Corn refiners manufacture sweeteners, starch, advanced bioproducts, corn oil and feed products from corn components such as starch, oil, protein, and fiber.