Are manufacturers becoming more sustainable?

Feb 3, 2021
Author: Craig Burton
Craig acts as commercial partner for a wide range of corporate and non-corporate clients. He is also responsible for maintaining technical standards throughout the firm.
manufacturing sustainability

In recent years slowing down climate change by reducing emissions has become a top priority for many countries around the world. In 2019 the UK government signed a legally binding target of net zero emissions by 2050.

A survey of senior figures (managing directors, and CEO’s, etc) in small and medium sized companies conducted by YouGov has found that manufacturing is one of the leading sectors in creating sustainability plans. However, because 2020 has been a difficult year for businesses, many are struggling to meet these goals.

This survey found that:

  • 57% of UK manufacturing businesses have a sustainability plan to help reduce carbon emissions.
  • 23% said that they do not have any future plans to introduce a sustainability plan.
  • 40% of the total SME’s surveyed do not have a plan in place to become more sustainable.


Sustainability barriers

The survey also identified what was preventing businesses from hitting or creating sustainability targets. The largest barrier manufacturers identified was budget, with 47% of manufacturers stating that finances are the largest barrier to sustainability. This is because many small and medium sized manufacturers would struggle to raise the finances needed in order to invest in becoming more sustainable. In addition, 33% of manufacturers have said that the COVID-19 pandemic has delayed their sustainability plans as their priorities have changed. This suggests that even those manufacturers that do have the finances to invest in sustainability are being forced to spend this money elsewhere due to the pandemic.


How can we help?

At Hawsons we have a dedicated team of manufacturing and engineering accountants at our offices in Sheffield, Doncaster and Northampton. Our specialist team offers a wide range of services which are tailored to meet your individual needs. Our understanding of the issues faced by the manufacturing and engineering businesses means that we can proactively seek out ways for you to maximise your profitability and minimise your tax liabilities.

Free initial meeting

Craig Burton

Partner, Sheffield