The egg industry is already one of the most sustainable agricultural sectors in Australia, but Australian Eggs is on a mission to continue to drive farmers towards carbon neutrality by delivering research and tools that will enable farmers to take steps towards a sustainable future.
Considering ways to help the industry become more sustainable, Australian Eggs saw an opportunity to help small to medium egg farms, which don’t have the resources to investigate and analyse the viability of solar energy. This prompted the development the solar calculator tool.
The solar calculator works by identifying farmer options and guides consideration, as well as accelerating the adoption of renewable energy in the egg industry.
Egg farming uses a significant amount of electricity as air-conditioned sheds are required to ensure hens are safe from Australia’s harsh climate. Solar energy works well for the egg industry as energy production mirrors the energy load from cooling systems across the day.
In response to electricity costs increasing over the past decade, some larger egg farms have already successfully implemented large scale solar projects to both lower their energy costs and improve environmental outcomes.
Managing Director of Australian Eggs, Rowan McMonnies said “10 of the country’s 12 largest egg producers have some form of solar energy powering their farms.
“Research tells us the community is interested in environmental issues and how agricultural industries are going to lower the carbon footprint,” he said.
“We’ve developed a solar calculator to allow egg farmers to see how solar could work on their farm, and how much they could reduce their power bill. Egg producers who have installed solar panels are noticing the difference.”
Egg production already has the lowest carbon footprint of common animal protein sources and is comparable to some plant-based foods. With the uptake of solar on egg farms, the industry is now even closer to achieving carbon neutrality.