A lack of CO2 threatens the UK’s poultry industry

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2 Sisters Food Group owner Ranjit Singh Boparan says CO2 suppliers ‘hold consumers hostage’
As a result of global inflation, several countries have found themselves in CO2 shortages, notably the UK.

How did the shortage occur?
Around 42% of the UK’s CO2 supply comes from ammonia company CF Industries, as CO2 is a by-product of the process. However, due to rising natural gas costs, CF Industries temporarily halted CO2 production at two UK facilities – Billingham and Ince – last year and has now closed one with the potential for more to follow.

Across the pond in the US, Mississippi’s main CO2 storage tank – Jackson Dome – was contaminated earlier this year, exacerbating the shortage. New Zealand is also feeling the shortage after one of its oil refineries shut down production.

How will CO2 deficiency affect poultry production?
According to Ranjit Singh Boparan, owner of food company, 2 Sisters Food Group, CO2 suppliers have increased the cost of CO2 to 20 times the pre-shortage price.

“When poultry cannot be processed, it means the birds have to be raised on farms where animal welfare can be affected… My businesses are resilient and we will get through the current CO2 crisis in partnership with our customers and suppliers. ” said Boparan. “But make no mistake—negotiations with suppliers are out of the question here.

What does this mean for consumers?
Boparan warned that the CO2 price shock would hit consumers.

“It’s a price shock like we’ve seen in energy, and all companies and households are feeling the pain right now,” Boparan said. “What is very sad is that in the end it is the UK shopper who pays the price and the CO2 suppliers are effectively holding the consumer hostage.”

More about 2 Sisters Food Group
According to WATTPoultry.com’s Top Companies database, 2 Sisters Food Group is the UK’s leading poultry producer with 323 million birds produced annually.

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