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What is an LCA?

A life cycle assessment or LCA, is a tool to measure the carbon footprint of a product by measuring its environmental impact, from its production to its consumption to its disposal. This farm-to-fridge analysis goes across all phases of our milk’s lifecycle. It starts with what our cows eat and spans from our factories to milk delivery to the empty carton. It even includes spilled milk!


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Our journey starts here

We can’t manage what we don’t measure. So, to achieve our goal of carbon positive by 2025, we first need to quantify our milk’s carbon footprint. As a leader in organic dairy, we’re committed to transparency, so we’re sharing our LCA results.

Understanding our footprint with an LCA helps us pinpoint what phases in our milk’s lifecycle emit the most carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases (GHG), so we can pinpoint ways to reduce emissions.


And the number is…

Our LCA found that a half-gallon carton of Horizon Organic whole milk has a carbon footprint of 5.58 kg CO2e per half-gallon—that’s our starting point as we pursue carbon positive. The CO2e stands for “carbon dioxide equivalent” and includes other greenhouse gases like methane and nitrous oxide, which are more potent than carbon dioxide.

Check out the LCA summary here.

So what does 5.58 kg CO2e mean in real life? Right now, drinking one glass of Horizon Organic whole milk a day for a year is the GHG emission equivalent of driving 632 miles. So, when we reach our carbon positive goal in 2025, drinking that same glass of milk for a year will be the GHG equivalent of driving ZERO miles.

Learn more about our carbon footprint by using the arrows in the lower right corner

Life Cycle Assessment performed in accordance with ISO 14040 methodology using 2018 data for Horizon Organic whole milk half gallons produced in three Danone North America owned facilities.


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Carbon positive, here we come

With our LCA as a starting point, we’re off and running towards our 2025 carbon positive goal. We just have to keeping measuring, managing and reducing. After reducing GHG emissions wherever we can, we’ll purchase U.S. carbon credits to offset what we can’t reduce. Together with our family farmer partners, we’re putting our hope for a brighter, more sustainable future into action. Learn more about our carbon positive journey here.