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The Collective Carbon Neutral Yoghurt

The Collective, a yoghurt company, claims to have launched the UK’s first carbon neutral yoghurt. However, their claim is entirely based on offsets and they do not state that they’ve reduced their own emissions at all. Polling has shown that this is not what consumers would expect from ‘carbon neutral’ claims.

The company have some transparency by providing links to the organisation which certified the carbon neutral claim – Climate Partner – where a tracking page outlines the emissions for which carbon credits have been bought (367,998kg CO2) but it’s not clear how this was calculated.

The projects they have funded through the purchased carbon credits are clean drinking water in Odisha, India and woodland projects in the UK and the Amazon. All have tracking links so more information could be sought if required. This transparency is positive however, relying on offsetting is still a false solution.

Projects which claim to offset emissions, especially those which are heavily focused on tree planting or forest protection, are difficult to measure. They are also impossible to guarantee, since trees can die, be cut down or burnt in forest fires – as happened to offsetting forests in Californian wildfires in 2022. For the clean drinking water project, the emissions prevented are declared but it is unclear as to how this is calculated as drinking water does not directly relate to emissions in the same way that tree planting does.

Doesn't reflect the full life cycle