At the heart of our business
At Monaghan, sustainability is at the very heart of our business. Mushrooms are an inherently sustainable, zero waste food but our commitment to sustainability stretches far beyond our products.
Our circular economy
The raw materials used to manufacture our mushroom substrate are straw, horse manure, poultry manure and gypsum, which are predominantly by-products of other agri-industries such as cereal crop production, poultry production and the horse stable industry. We naturally recycle from the outset, extracting the maximum value from these by-products to recover and regenerate new products. Once the mushrooms have been harvested, the spent substrate is used as soil conditioner.
Sustainable cultivation means adopting the most energy efficient heating, cooling and lighting systems. Our farms operate a controlled environment for the mushrooms to grow, managing energy and water resource as efficiently as possible. We deploy the latest environmental control systems designed to maintain optimum growing conditions and ensure energy efficiency throughout. All Monaghan sites in Ireland procure green electricity for their operations and our Tyholland site is currently installing solar panels.
Supporting local food – one mile at a time
Sourcing and consuming local mushrooms in local markets means fresher food that has travelled fewer miles. Find out more about Mushroom Miles here »
Our local environment
We respect the natural environments we operate in so we’ve made a focused effort to preserve biodiversity across all our farms, with land set aside on all sites specifically managed for biodiversity enhancement. So far we've implemented lots of initiatives including flowers, installing insect hotels, bird boxes, butterfly baths, new planting areas and green areas.
Our communities across the globe
At Monaghan, we're committed to giving back to the communities we operate in through sponsorship, charitable work and providing employment opportunities.
- From January to December 2020 Monaghan has provided 74.73 tonnes of surplus products to FareShare. That’s enough to contribute to 177,932 meals for people in need! FareShare is the UK’s largest food charity that redistributes edible surplus food from the food industry that would otherwise have gone to waste, to charities and community groups.
- We’ve been proud sponsors of local GAA including Tyholland GAA and Carbury GAA club for a number of years. All of our sites get involved in various local fundraising initiatives throughout the year too.
Our unique model allows us to grow sustainable new communities wherever we go. We operate production facilities in each region to ensure that our mushrooms are grown as close to our customers as possible. This sustainable model helps us to minimise our carbon footprint and provide sustainable employment in each community we operate in.
Our packaging solutions
We understand the importance of innovative, sustainable packaging solutions for our customers. This means we’re always thinking of better ways to package our products too. We work closely with our customers to develop packaging solutions that meet their unique requirements and align with their corporate sustainability strategy. Here are some features we've been improving:
Recycled PET plastic packaging
PET packaging can be recycled in a 'closed loop' system. This means that any packs made from recycled PET can be continuously recycled back into food containers.
Introducing cardboard trays
Using cardboard trays removes plastic from the system and replaces it with a sustainable, renewable material. We introduced cardboard trays as an alternative back in 2018 and its usage continues to grow.
Removing colour from our packaging
Colour adds extra material to plastics and limits recycling options. By removing colour from our packaging we're using plastic in a more natural way and increasing options for recycling.
Reducing usage of PVC films
PVC films have been the standard for mushrooms for over 40 years. We've removed PVC films from more than 60% of our products and we're continuously working to move products into a more recyclable Polyethylene alternative.
Making sure your mushrooms don’t go to waste
Did you know that mushrooms are the recycling champs of the natural world? They’re grown using the waste generated from other areas of agriculture. Not only do mushrooms support the planet, they’re a great source of vitamin B and folic acid too.
If you’ve bought your mushrooms wrapped in plastic, get rid of this as soon as you get home. If the mushrooms can breathe, they degrade less quickly. They’re better off stored in a brown paper bag or loose in the fridge. They keep far longer in the fridge too compared to when they are stored at room temperature, so you can enjoy them for days to come!
Use every part of your mushrooms! Don’t bother peeling your mushrooms, as therapeutic as it may be. Chop up your stalks to include in whatever mushroomy meal you are making.
Our Sustainability Partners
We have been verified members of the Bord Bia Origin Green programme in Ireland for a number of years. The programme is the world’s only national food and drink sustainability programme. It enables the industry to set and achieve measurable sustainability targets.
We’re working closely with the Carbon Trust to develop a carbon footprint tool that calculates the amount of carbon per Kg of mushrooms sold. This will help us identify new ways to reduce carbon in all aspects of our business. We’re the first mushroom producer to work with the Carbon Trust on a project like this.
|Bord Bia Sustainable Horticulture Assurance Scheme
All our Irish farms are certified to the Bord Bia Sustainable Horticulture Assurance Scheme (SHAS). The scheme ensures that produce is grown, handled, packed and transported to the highest standards of quality, hygiene and sustainability.
All our UK farms are part of Linking Environment and Farming (LEAF), an organisation that promotes environmentally friendly farming. This standard recognises farmers that produce food in a way that meets high environmental standards.
Some of our farms are certified to the Global G.A.P. standard. The Global G.A.P. standard ensures that food is produced in a way that minimises environmental impact.
|R&D at MBio
At Monaghan, we’re always looking for better ways to make health and nutrition a natural part of daily life. Our R&D division, MBio, represents our total commitment to bringing research-lead, commercially driven innovation to our customers. Since 2007, MBio has been dedicated to the improvement and identification of exciting new process, services, concepts and products. From farm to fork, our research covers every aspect of the food supply chain and beyond. Find out more about our MBio research and innovation here »
|Plastic Actions Alliance
We’re proud to be one of the founding members of the Plastic Actions Alliance, an initiative of Ireland’s leading agricultural processing and food businesses that works to significantly reduce use of plastic packaging across all our operations.