The owners of the Saltcoats abattoir are celebrating after saving 885 tonnes of plastic in the last two years as part of a 15 per cent reduction in plastic use.

The company ditched its rigid trays, films and flexibles used for retail packaging.

The figure is equivalent to about 100 million plastic carrier bags and will ultimately save a total of over 800 tonnes a year.

Dawn Meats, who own the Dunbia Highland Meats plant in Saltcoats, is powering all of its sites using 100 per cent renewable electricity and recycling and reusing 51 per cent of all waste, excluding that which is sent for energy generation

Chief executive Niall Browne said: “At Dawn Meats and Dunbia, we recognise that our future relies upon the health of our natural world and the wellbeing of our communities.

"Sustainability has been central to our business plan for over 40 years.

"We also recognise that achieving our targets requires real action, which is why we have committed €100m by 2030 as part of our Plan Four Zero initiative."

Sustainability Director Gill Higgins added: “At Dawn Meats and Dunbia, we are serious about reaching our ambitious targets and I’m pleased to say we are making real progress in this regard.”