UK meat and farming industry at risk due to closure of CO2 factory

The UK meat and farming industry is at risk after the UK’s biggest CO2 supplier announced it is closing its Billingham plant in the northeast of England.

CF Industries, the UK’s largest producer of carbon dioxide, said it is planning to temporarily halt ammonia production as the price of natural gas has more than doubled to record levels, making it uneconomical to continue.

CO2, which is used in soft drinks, beer and by meat suppliers to stun animals before slaughter, is a byproduct of the ammonia production process.

READ MORE: Farmers warn of triple digit spike in costs without government intervention

CF Industries said that it now plans to import ammonia to be used as fertiliser, as natural gas prices will continue to rise in the months ahead amid the cost of living crisis and Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

“While we are in a much better position than we were a year ago, if CF industries follows through on the threat to close Billingham, the British meat industry will have serious concerns.” British Meat Processors Association (BMPA) boss, Nick Allen said.

He added: “Without sufficient CO2 supplies, the UK will potentially face an animal welfare issue with a mounting number of pigs and poultry unable to be sent for processing.” 

Click here to sign up to Grocery Gazette’s free daily email newsletter



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.



Sign up to our daily newsletter to get all the latest grocery news and insights direct to your inbox.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.