N.C. Division of Pollution Prevention and Environmental Assistance
EMS and Pork Production Tools

Environmental Management Systems for Pork Producers

This site is dedicated to assisting pork producers design and implement an environmental management system (EMS). While EMSs were initially used by manufacturers, they are emerging as beneficial tools to help livestock producers better manage their environmental performance. Various state and federal projects offer EMS models for pork, beef, poultry, and dairy livestock producers as well as egg producers. Most often, an EMS model is based on the international voluntary standard ISO 14001 adopted in 1996. Since the adoption of the ISO 14001 standard, there has been steady growth in the implementation of EMS by organizations representing different sectors, including agriculture and agribusiness.

Potential Benefits of an EMS

  • Improved Environmental Performance
  • Improved Management Techniques and Efficiency
  • Improved Compliance
  • Reduced Operating Expenses
  • Better Communication
  • Improved Public Image
  • Enhanced Customer Trust
  • Reduced Liability
As larger farms began to recognize the value of implementing EMS based on the ISO 14001 model, it became evident that assistance and tools were needed to help smaller farms that might be interested in using this approach. This guidance and the corresponding tools were developed through a cooperative effort of state agencies - N.C. Division of Pollution Prevention and Environmental Assistance (DPPEA), N.C. Cooperative Extension Service, and N.C. Division of Soil and Water Conservation -  working with North Carolina pork producers with funding from the Environmental Protection Agency - Office of Water. Eight farms were selected as pilots to design and implement an EMS.  Each farm was given a small grant to assist with implementation and “coaches” to help guide them through the process. These producers have realized numerous environmental and economic benefits from EMS implementation. To learn more about this project, read the Environmental Management Systems for Pork Producers final report.

Note: Many of the examples included within this Web site are PDF files, readable only with Adobe Reader. This free software can be downloaded from the Adobe Web site