Butterflies and Biogas a Focus of Smithfield Foods

*Did you know that the monarch’s migratory path passes right down the eastern seaboard?*


Standing in an established pollinator patch means bees are regularly buzzing your head, but that doesn’t bother these three men. They are happy to see the bees and butterflies in this prairie planting.

The field is a part of a Smithfield Foods hog finishing site, called Valley View Farm, near Greencastle, Missouri. This site has spaces for 114,000 hogs, and half of the lagoons are harvesting methane gas. Three years ago, Smithfield teamed up with Roeslein Alternative Energy (RAE) to install biogas infrastructure across all company-owned finishing farms in Missouri. In addition to using manure, the project will harvest prairie grass from this field and others for methane generation.

Smithfield has made a commitment to reduce the company’s greenhouse gas emissions by 25% by 2025. In 10 years, says Smithfield, nearly 100% percent of company-owned hog finishing spaces in Missouri will have the capabilities to produce renewable natural gas (RNG).

In 2018, Smithfield joined the Environmental Defense Fund’s Monarch Butterfly Habitat Exchange, which restores monarch butterfly habitats on private lands including Smithfield hog farms in Missouri. Smithfield planted almost 1,000 acres of pollinator habitat in Missouri this year, with more to come.

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