• Father and son, David and James Madden, founded carbon neutral meat supplier Flinders & Co.
    Father and son, David and James Madden, founded carbon neutral meat supplier Flinders & Co.
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Victorian processor and distributor Flinders + Co has reinvented itself in a bold bid to drive meat industry change by tapping into the groundswell of ethically motivated consumers.

In what is being described as a world-first offering, the company has introduced a carbon neutral certification on every kilogram of meat it sells.

Flinders + Co’s founders James Madden and his father David believe that their company is the first food service supplier in the world to offer a full range of meat products that are 100 per cent carbon neutral.

Flinders + Co, formerly Flinders Island Meat, started out north of Tasmania on Flinders Island as a primary processing operation that included a small abattoir and a butcher shop.

The business evolved and the pair found a foothold selling their premium lamb products direct to Melbourne’s top chefs.

Over the next few years they added a full range of meat and poultry products from other suppliers to their offering for food service customers.

When it became clear the company branding no longer reflected the business, James Madden says, a company rebrand was initiated, which kick-started a six month reevaluation of the entire business.

“The brand is the pretty face of the company, but I wanted to go deeper and explore the heart and soul of the company – why we exist, what we want to achieve in five, ten – even twenty years,” Madden says.

“We really reflected on it and came up with a new company vision to ‘cultivate a better food world’.

“This was something we’d always been seeking to do but we had never put into as many words. Everyday is different when you look through that prism – it challenges you to do things differently.”

One of those things included reinventing itself as a carbon neutral supplier, which meant that the emissions from every kilogram of meat it sells would have to be offset.

The carbon neutral certification was achieved after an in-depth analysis of the business by consultants from the Carbon Reduction Institute.

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