Gold at World Steak Challenge 2017

Wednesday, 05 July 2017 16:12

Dawn Meats are proud to have received a Gold award at the World Steak Challenge 2017 for its grass fed 28 month Shorthorn Sirloin Steak from Cardington. Now in its third year, the World Steak Challenge was held at The Magic Roundabout in Old Street, London on 4th July.

The global challenge, which recognises Gold and Silver Medal steak quality, was presented by Global Meat News. This year's competition saw 17 countries and 25 breeds represented with more than 90 entries involved across the categories. Each steak was judged against internationally agreed criteria, that covered both raw and cooked technical testing. A two-stage judging process ensured that each steak was sampled by both a panel of expert judges and a panel of consumer judges. Each entry is judged on a variety of factors including marbling, trim, aroma, succulence and taste.

Rod Addy, editor of GlobalMeatNews, said: "The sheer range and quality of entries this year is a testament to the hard work put in by producers across the globe. This year's Challenge has attracted a record number of entries, reflecting the pride producers take in steak production and the importance of winning this accolade to propel their business and their brand".

Commenting on the Gold Award, Mike Roach, Dawn Meats, said: “We are proud to have been awarded Gold by the panel at this year’s World Steak Challenge. Not only is it testament to the hard work and dedication of our top class producers, it is a great endorsement of our exclusive process which combines tradition and technology to consistently produce an outstanding steak. We are delighted that the Judges enjoyed them as much as we enjoyed selecting, producing and presenting them.”

Modern Slavery and Human Trafficking Statement

Introduction
This statement is made by Dawn Meats (UK) [“Dawn Meats”] and sets out the steps the Company has implemented to ensure that slavery and human trafficking is not taking place in its supply chain or any part of its business.  It is a Statement made in accordance with Section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act 2015 (the MSA), and covers the financial year from January 1st 2016 to 31st December 2016. 

Dawn Meats is fully committed to the objectives of the MSA and recognises its responsibility to be aware of potential risks of modern slavery within the organisation and its supply chain.  Modern slavery is a global problem.  It is complex and is characterised by exploitation and abuse. Working in collaboration with our business partners we are committed to monitoring, reviewing, improving, aligning and developing our management systems to ensure the integrity and transparency of our supply chain both at home and overseas.

The CEO and Senior Management Team have ongoing responsibility for ensuring that the statement is published annually and accurately reflects the company’s measures and initiatives to tackle slavery and human trafficking.  The Group Human Resources department and site HR Managers are responsible for implementing policies and reviewing the process by which they are developed.  The HR teams are also responsible for the cascade of information throughout the sites and the conveying of similar messages to the wider business. 

In addition, we have appointed a Modern Slavery Champion, whose role it is to ensure that we are doing all that we can to avoid the possibility of modern slavery occurring within our operations and supply chain. Furthermore, a key objective of the company’s Corporate Social Responsibility forum is to devise and implement ethical initiatives to endorse the company’s commitment to acting ethically and with integrity in all its business practices.

About Us
Dawn Meats is a premium meat processor and supplier of choice to a range of leading supermarkets, food service and restaurant businesses.  Established in 1980, Dawn Meats is now an industry leader.  We employ more than 3,300 staff in ten countries, exporting to over 48 countries. At Dawn Meats we are committed to our staff and our customers.  People are our strength and dedication to excellence is at the heart of Dawn Meats success. 

We welcome and encourage fresh thinking and actively build on an innovative culture across the company.  We are a family owned business, which remains true to its farming heritage through the close relationships it has forged with 20,000 farmers in the UK and Ireland.  Dawn Meats works closely with some of the world’s leading food companies who are attracted by our commitment to business integrity, sustainability and quality.

Our Supply Chain
Our supply chain includes the sourcing of livestock and raw materials principally related to the provision of food.  The manufacturing supply chain is one of the most complicated of any industry with several tiers of suppliers. 

Supply chain transparency, security and integrity are crucial components of our business model.  We have implemented robust technical and traceability systems to ensure that our products are responsibly sourced from suppliers whose values are aligned with our own.  We have clearly established internal processes which set out to verify that our key suppliers comply with our own very high standards which includes a long term established and detailed farm auditing programme. 

We are an AB member of SEDEX (Supplier Ethical Data Exchange) and we encourage our suppliers to register and complete a SEDEX SAQ as part of their relationship with Dawn Meats.   Those suppliers who are not members of SEDEX need to demonstrate their compliance and commitment to ethical trading and supply chain integrity in order to qualify for a relationship with our company.  All sites within Dawn Meats extensively undertake Ethical Trade Audits. 

Our Standards
Dawn Meats has a fundamental commitment to acting ethically and with integrity in all business relationships. We are committed to working collaboratively with our business partners to ensure that our supply chain is transparent and is free from labour exploitation and abuse.  Our commitment is extended to social and environmental responsibility and we have a zero tolerance of slavery and human trafficking.

Our Social Accountability Policy embraces the principles of the Ethical Trading Initiative base code.  It specifically addresses the key subjects contained in the Modern Slavery Act as the following exert taken from section 1 demonstrates: -

‘Employment is freely chosen.  There is no forced, bonded or involuntary prison labour. The Group operates a policy of providing equal opportunities to all workers.  Workers are not required to lodge deposits or identity papers and are free to leave after notice.’

Ethical Best Practice has been identified as a bedrock of the Dawn Meats business model.  The risks posed by Slavery and Human Trafficking are continually monitored by our Modern Slavery Champion and HR Leaders. 

Risk Assessment
One of the largest risks in our supply chain lies with our labour providers as the numbers of temporary workers may rise significantly at peak times of the year.  We have stringent Service Level Agreements in place with our labour providers to ensure that they are fully committed to the principles of the Modern Slavery Act, and we remain acutely alert to any hidden labour exploitation which may include practices such as bonded labour, payment for work finding services, payment for access to specific shifts and forced use of accommodation. 

Dawn Meats use labour provider partners to supply a percentage of our workforce.  These are long established business relationships with providers who are fully aware of the Company’s compliance requirements.  All labour providers to Dawn Meats are registered with and in possession of a valid GLA licence and are required to attend Stronger Together Workshops as part of our terms of business.

Active Check immediately highlights to us any changes in license status.  The diagram below maps out the planned monitoring and audit process for labour providers.  Each labour provider will be audited on an annual basis.

Diagram Outlining Labour Provider Audit and Monitoring Process for 2017

Training and Awareness
We have an ongoing training programme for HR Leaders to ensure that they are fully trained on the risks posed by labour exploitation. HR practitioners have and will be attending Stronger Together Workshops which are aimed at tackling modern slavery in the supply chain. 

The learnings and knowledge from these workshops will be communicated at induction and refresher induction to Dawn employees and agency colleagues alike.

In 2016 to ensure a high level of understanding of the risks of modern slavery and human trafficking in our supply chain and our business we embarked on an education awareness campaign with our senior managers via two methods – the Executive Team briefing and the Company’s Corporate Social Responsibility forums.  The company has reinforced its responsibility under the Modern Slavery Act via its commitment in the published 2016 CSR report which appears on the Company’s website.

Whistleblowing Policy / Whistleblowing line
We have a robust and established Group Whistleblowing Policy that is bought to the attention of all employees and agency workers who join Dawn Meats.  The policy which is translated into a number of languages is published on staff notice boards. Additionally, there is an anonymous confidential hotline in place.  Information posters are published in both English and Polish.  The line is available 24 / 7 and is manned by a team of independent professionals who have translation facilities available in multiple languages to all callers. 

This confidential helpline is available to all employees, contractors and agency workers.  It is managed entirely independently by a 3rd party who will investigate any complaints made. 

Dawn Meats encourages and supports any individuals who raise genuine concerns to ensure that no one suffers as a consequence.

Measuring Effectiveness – Performance Indicators
In order to monitor the effectiveness of the steps taken by the business to prevent slavery and trafficking  the company will use the following indicators on an ongoing basis: -

- Detailed monitoring /recording of all complaints received via our Confidential Hotline.
- Ongoing training of existing and new people to ensure full understanding of the commitments of the Modern Slavery Act and ethical trading initiatives.
- Ongoing annual audit of all Labour providers 
- Increased usage of SEDEX platform in close conjunction with our suppliers.
- Delivery of in house and external ethical training awareness to key people.
- Commitment to continuous improvement and thus a review of our recruitment and induction practices.
- Full review and audit of transportation practices to and from work.
- Translation of relevant policies into most commonly spoken languages other than English.

Niall Browne
Chief Executive

This Statement has been approved by the CEO and Senior Management Team who will review and update annually.

Dawn Meats was delighted to accept the awards for ‘Best Beef Product’, ‘Best Red Meat Product’ and ‘Young Manager of the Year’ at this year’s Meat Management Industry Awards which took place at the Hilton Birmingham Metropole on Wednesday 28th June 2017. 

As one of the highlights of the meat industry calendar, the annual Meat Management Industry Awards sets a benchmark for recognising excellence throughout the meat industry. Dawn Meats was awarded ‘Best Beef Product’ for their Extra Special Slow Cooked West Country Teriyaki Beef Rib as supplied to Asda. The product was also selected as overall winner of the ‘Best Red Meat Product’ which recognises the top product from the three category winners – Beef, Lamb and Pork/Pigmeat.

Commenting, Kristian Gabrielson, Asda Account Manager, Dawn Meats said: “We are proud to have been awarded ‘Best Beef Product’ and chosen as ‘Best Red Meat Product’. We attribute this success to the innovative approach our dedicated and passionate team take and our commitment to quality combined with our expertise and exceptional customer service”.

Other products from Dawn Meats to receive recognition on the night included:

Chuck ‘n’ Rib Beef Burger – Finalist – Best Burger
ASDA Extra Special Slow Cooked Lamb Tagine - Highly Commended – Best Lamb Product
ASDA Extra Special Slow Cooked Coq au Vin – Finalist – Best Poultry Product

Young Manager of the Year Award

Gerard Kennedy, Site Operations Manager at Highland Meats, a division of Dawn Meats (UK) has been named ‘Young Manager of the Year’ at this year’s Meat Management Industry Awards.

To be considered for the award Meat Management were looking for candidates under the age of 34 with initiative, someone to watch for in the future and someone who is looking at the industry as a whole, not just within their specific job role and the day to day running of the business or department.

Having first joined as a graduate in 2009 Ger progressed quickly through the Graduate Training Programme, and worked across numerous sites in both the UK and Ireland. In 2014, Ger took over as Site Operations Manager in Highland Meats. Under Ger’s management, the site of 280 people is a strong inclusive team who strive for continuous improvement. The site has improved all of its’ key customer quality & service scores, including complaints and audit results. In addition, throughputs in the factory have increased while budget and cost control measures have been tightened and improved.

As part of the award process, Ger was interviewed by a panel of 5 industry professionals. The interview process involved taking a dive into his history within the industry, his ambitions and where he sees himself in 5-10 years. Ger also had to provide his views on the meat industry, what he sees for the future of the industry, the challenges it faces and how these challenges may be tackled.

The panel included: Keith Fisher, Chief executive, Institute of Meat, Bill Jermey, Chief executive, Food & Drink Training & Education Council Ltd, Rob Smith, Director of Blue Fish Marketing Consultancy and Meat Management magazine contributor, Christine Walsh, Managing director, Meat & Livestock Commercial Services, Emily Ansell-Elfer, Editor, Meat Management magazine and Graham Yandell, publisher of Meat Management magazine as Chair.

Commenting on Ger’s award, Ken Hallahan, UK Operations Director, Dawn Meats said: “Ger’s inclusive and supportive management style has allowed him to be successful in the development of both the Highland Meats site itself and the management team. His leadership skills and approach have helped him to drive through a culture of continuous improvement and collaboration across functions and responsibilities”.

Helen Rees, Group HR, Dawn Meats said: “Ger is an excellent example of the progression that may be achieved by graduates through the Dawn Meats Brighter Futures programme. His rapid rise through the company is testament to his hardworking and meticulous nature. Ger demonstrates all the key skills and characteristics required to succeed in this industry and is a real asset to the business”.

https://meatmanagement.com/best-of-the-uk-meat-industry-honoured-at-meat-management-industry-awards/ 

 

Dawn Meats has agreed a strategic partnership with Dunbia to establish a majority owned joint venture [‘JV’] in the United Kingdom comprising the UK operations of both organisations. Dawn will separately acquire Dunbia’s operations in the Republic of Ireland. The deal is subject to approval by the relevant competition authorities.

In Ireland, Dawn Meats will have 9 facilities (including 5 abattoirs), following the addition of two complementary Dunbia facilities - one abattoir in Slane, and one boning hall in Kilbeggan.

The combined UK businesses will trade as Dunbia and will deliver enhanced scale and market presence to better serve existing farmer suppliers and customers of both organisations across the retail, manufacturing, wholesale and food service sectors. The businesses are highly complementary, and will offer customers regionally sourced solutions for both beef and lamb from 15 facilities across Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Dunbia’s CEO Jim Dobson, OBE will be CEO of the new Dunbia JV, and Dawn Meats’ CEO Niall Browne, will be Executive Chairman. The JV will be run from Dunbia’s existing headquarters in Dungannon, Northern Ireland.

Commenting, Niall Browne, CEO of Dawn Meats said: “We are both family businesses with a deep connection to farming and a culture and business ethos that is centered on quality and sustainability. Given the uncertainty posed by Brexit, this partnership should further underpin the competiveness of both operations to the benefit of all stakeholders in the UK, Ireland and across Europe.”

“We are very excited about the future of both companies and the opportunities that this transaction will bring for our staff, customers and suppliers. In our key operating markets we will be involved in 3 leading national businesses with Dawn Meats in Ireland, Dunbia in the UK and Elivia in France, with our cooperative partners Terrena.”

Jim Dobson, CEO of Dunbia said: “This is the right strategic partnership for Dunbia’s staff and customers and sees us joining with a company with a shared heritage of excellence in the production of premium beef and lamb products. The new UK joint venture confirms our future as a leading supplier in the UK market. In a consolidating industry this deal makes strategic sense for both companies, our customers and our farmer suppliers.”

Dawn Meats has become the first Irish food manufacturing company to achieve the coveted Business Working Responsibly Mark at its Carroll’s Cross site in Waterford. A significant milestone on our journey to becoming Europe’s most sustainable meat company, Dawn Meats last night joined a group of only 25 companies in Ireland to have attained this standard. 

The Mark represents a challenging standard and is modelled on internationally recognized ISO 26000.  A comprehensive review of the business from corporate responsibility governance, to workplace, marketplace, environment and community practices took place at audit stage, which was completed over two days in May.

Dawn Meats has been widely recognized for its achievements in environmental sustainability and the Mark is further validation of this work and the work undertaken in broader areas of sustainability. 

Dawn Meats CEO Niall Browne commented: “We have set ourselves the goal of becoming Europe’s most sustainable meat company and the endorsement by BITC, with the achievement of the Business Working Responsibly Mark at Carroll’s Cross is further evidence of our progress.  Over the last two years we have updated our sustainability strategy, published our first CSR report and broadened our engagement with stakeholders. As a business we are committed to continuous improvement and are excited by what is achievable over the coming years.”

Head of CSR David O’ Flynn added: “Being awarded the Mark is tremendous recognition of the commitment shown by Dawn Meats to responsible business practices.  Over the last 18 months the team has worked with BITC’s Mark framework to develop a formalised and documented approach to responsibility and sustainability. Dawn Meats knows that being responsible and sustainable works in harmony and synergy with business growth and it is this knowledge that ensures our continuation on this path.”

Pictured: Niall Browne, CEO of Dawn Meats, receiving the Mark from Tina Roche, CEO of Business in the Community Ireland.

Dawn Meats has achieved ISO 50001 certification for its development and implementation of an efficient energy use policy in accordance with the highest international standards at its retail packing plant, Dawn Cross Hands in South Wales. 

The International Organization for Standardization (ISO) provides world-class specifications for products, services and systems, to ensure quality, safety and efficiency, from technology, to food safety, to agriculture and healthcare. ISO 50001 is one of their most sought after standards. Dawn Cross Hands had previously been certified to the ISO 14001 Standard. 

Dawn Cross Hands is a large energy user with an annual bill of close to £1 million and refrigeration makes up a significant percentage of the total energy used at the site. With the development, implementation and integration of an energy management system aimed specifically at refrigeration consumption, the site has reduced its refrigeration consumption by 6% delivering significant financial returns, and resulting in its ISO 50001 certification. 

Commenting Ken Hallahan, UK Operations Director, Dawn Meats said, "ISO certification is recognized and respected by farmer suppliers, retailer and food service customers, and the general public as it provides reassurance and certainty that an organisation is operating to an international standard. Dawn Meats views effective energy management as an essential strategic requirement of the business, so it is fitting that Dawn Cross Hands has achieved this certification".  

Michael Brophy of Certification Europe said, "Dawn Meats deserve to be congratulated for what they have achieved. Not only have they pushed the boundaries in energy management, they have put themselves amongst a very select group of organisations worldwide that have achieved the Energy Management standard (ISO 50001). Being certified makes it clear that the organisation is committed to improving the operational and environmental efficiency of its Utilities and Energy. With Certification to ISO 50001 through Certification Europe, Dawn Meats have given clear evidence of this commitment". 

The achievements in refrigeration energy consumption will now be replicated on other significant energy users at Dawn Cross Hands, and upon review of the benefits, the wider Dawn Group plans to roll out the standard elsewhere in its network of plants. 

ISO 50001 provides a framework of requirements for organisations to develop a policy for more efficient use of energy; set targets and objectives; use data to better understand and make decisions about energy use; and measure the results, continually reviewing and improving how the policy works. 

First CSR Report

Monday, 27 March 2017 08:04

Dawn Meats has announced ambitious 2025 targets to reduce water and energy intensity by 40% and CO2 emission intensity by 50%. The commitments are contained in our first CSR report which also sets out the ambitious goal of becoming Europe’s most sustainable meat company.

Sustainability across the wider business has been prioritised since Dawn Meats published its first sustainability plan in 2009.  As one of the first verified members of Origin Green, Dawn Meats has had its sustainability credentials endorsed by many external agencies, and since 2012 annual progress under Origin Green has been independently assessed to the highest international standards.

Commenting on the 2016 CSR report, CEO Niall Browne said, “None of this would be possible without the commitment of our staff. We have a really strong CSR committee at management level, but the buy-in throughout the organisation has been a credit to every member of the team. 2025 is fast approaching, and we will continue to keep a close eye on our targets to ensure that we meet and exceed them where possible.”

Group Head of CSR David O’Flynn commented, “At Dawn Meats we recognise that doing the right thing will build a more robust business for the future which will benefit employees, customers and farmers. Our CSR strategy is aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals and I am very excited about what we have committed to achieve and we will engage widely to deliver on these objectives.”  

Dawn Meats works with 15,000 Irish farmers and 5,000 British farmers, contributing over €550m to local rural economies across Ireland, and €450m across the UK. The CSR report details many of our 2016 achievements.

An example of how Dawn Meats is approaching the sustainability challenge can be found in the progress achieved with our Eco Drive initiative in 2016, which has seen hauliers achieve a reduction of 1m litres of fuel and saving 2,500 tons of CO2. These savings have been achieved collaboratively through an investment by hauliers in training and more fuel-efficient vehicles.

Dawn Meats reputation of innovation in premium meat products continued in 2016 and in this year we launched more than 100 new and innovative value added meat products with major European supermarket chains.

We also focused in 2016 on expanding internal communication - leveraging social media, intranet and bulletin boards, around themes such as the environment, health and well-being and food safety. Employees came together to participate in events such as our dedicated Health Week 2016, with over 900 staff attending health clinics for check-ups. 2016 also saw Dawn Meats donate almost €200,000 to local charities, and its staff volunteered over 2,000 hours to causes which are valued by employees and the communities where they operate.

In keeping with our mission to provide consistent, quality meat products from sustainable sources, we continued to work in 2016 with our partners Teagasc, the Irish Farmers Journal and McDonald’s to progress research into sustainable beef production at the Newford Demonstration Farm in Athenry. The farm showcases beef production utilising natural grass advantage and alternative breeds to deliver appropriate muscle size and shape for modern European consumers.

Dawn Meats was delighted to support the NFU Scotland’s Annual Dinner, which took place at the Radisson Blu Hotel, Glasgow as part of the Union’s Conference and AGM on Monday 6th February 2017.

Over 500 diners were served up a showcase menu of some of the very best food and drink that Scotland has to offer including our very own Caledonia Crown PGI Scotch Beef which featured as the main course on the menu.

Isla Roebuck, Operations Director of Dawn Meats commented: “It was a privilege to supply this year’s NFU annual dinner with our Caledonia Crown PGI Scotch Beef and a fantastic opportunity to showcase to guests the exceptional quality and reputation that our Caledonia Crown PGI Scotch Beef delivers time after time.”   

NFU Scotland, Chief Executive, Scott Walker commented: “Every day of the year our farmers are working hard to produce the high-quality food and drink that is available right on our doorsteps. This year’s annual dinner is once again a celebration of that passion and enthusiasm. I am particularly grateful to the companies throughout Scotland who have sponsored or supplied the produce for this year’s dinner. I know that our Scottish farmers take immense pride in what they grow and produce, testament to the thriving food and drink industry we have in this country. I am very much aware that consumers, here and abroad, recognise and value the provenance and quality of the food we produce here in Scotland, something that the Union will continue to champion.”

NFU Scotland, President, Andrew McCornick commented: “We wanted to use this opportunity to showcase the highest quality produce from Scottish farms and this was achieved thanks to Dawn Meats generous contribution of top quality Caledonia Crown beef for our dinner which drew the highest level of compliments from all who attended”.

Pictured (l-r): Gary Mitchell, Vice President NFU Scotland, Isla Roebuck, Dawn Meats, Andrew McCornick, President NFU Scotland and Martin Kennedy, Vice President NFU Scotland

The 2nd annual Great Agri-Food Debate will take place at 2.30pm on Wednesday 22nd of February in the Garret Fitzgerald Debating Chamber in University College Dublin (UCD).  Food and agriculture students from Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) will join students from UCD to debate the motion: “Brexit will be good for the Irish Agri-Food Industry”.  

This is the second year that UCD will play host to the Great Agri-Food Debate, a joint initiative of Dawn Meats & McDonald’s Ireland and it follows a successful inaugural event last year. 

While the Irish food and drinks industry waits to see what will unfold as Britain exits the European Union, companies are developing plans to reconfigure their businesses and minimize the downside risks.  The ideas shared by the students will add new perspectives to an already dynamic discussion.   

Justin McCarthy, Editor of the Irish Farmers Journal, will Chair the debate and the judging panel will comprise Niall Browne, CEO, Dawn Meats; Adrian Crean, Managing Director, McDonald’s Ireland and Tara McCarthy, CEO Bord Bia.  Dawn Meats and McDonald’s Ireland are co-sponsoring the event.

Commenting Niall Browne, CEO said; “We held this debate for the first time last year, and I think we were all struck by the vigour of the debate and the knowledge of the participants. We have long known that our 3rd level institutions are a rich source of talent and innovative thinking and with Britain’s exit from the EU on the horizon, it’s a key issue on which students should have an informed opinion.”

Commenting Adrian Crean, MD McDonald’s Ireland said; “It’s great to be heading back to UCD again this year to encourage debate of one of the really key issues of the day. McDonald’s in Ireland is going from strength to strength as a business and like many other companies Brexit is a challenge on the horizon. It’s important that we listen to the views of the next generation of business leaders and all stakeholders as we consider the possible impact on the business environment.”  

Following on from the success of last year’s debate, there is expected to be great interest.  All are welcome to attend.

Dawn Meats are delighted to have once again been selected as “National Public Champion” and will represent Ireland in the 2016/2017 European Business Awards sponsored by RSM.

The European Business Awards are widely recognised as the showcase for Europe’s most dynamic companies and as part of the adjudication process we now look forward to sharing our experience and business success in greater detail with the judging panel.

To be successful for this coveted award, public votes are critical.  Voting is now open but will close on the 1st of March.

Vote to support Dawn Meats by clicking here: http://www.businessawardseurope.com/vote/detail-new/the-award-for-environmental-corporate-sustainability-1/20776

Thank you in advance for your support.

 

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