This section describes how the official and private activities of The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall are financed. The majority of staff and official and charitable activities, including the official offices of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry, are paid for from His Royal Highness’s private income from the Duchy of Cornwall.
Income and Expenditure Account
Year to 31 March
Income and funding Duchy of Cornwall 21,730 20,719 Sovereign Grant 1,201 1,339 Government Departments 557 461 Total income and funding 23,488 22,519 Official Costs Official duties and charitable activities (8,523) (9,092) London office and official residence (190) (414) Official travel by air and rail (1,011) (925) Overseas tours and military secondees (557) (461) Surplus after official costs 13,207 11,627 Other Costs Tax (including VAT) (4,854) (4,757) Non-official expenditure (3,003) (3,098) Funding for the activities of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry, other expenditure including capital expenditure, and transfer to reserves (4,962) (3,529) Net cash surplus 388 243
Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Year to 31 March
CO2 e emissions
Office and domestic energy use 147 155 UK official and other travel 870 964 Household emissions 1,017 1,119 The Home Farm at Highgrove 1,832 1,965
Income and Funding
£millions Duchy of Cornwall 21.730
The Prince of Wales’s private income comes from the Duchy of Cornwall, an estate comprising agricultural, commercial and residential property mostly in the South West of England. The Duchy also has a financial investment portfolio. His Royal Highness chooses to use the majority of his income from the Duchy to meet the cost of his, The Duchess of Cornwall’s, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge’s and Prince Harry’s public and charitable work. Income has risen by 4.9% compared to last year, continuing the sustainable growth of the Duchy of Cornwall’s revenues over the last two decades. The Duchy of Cornwall’s annual accounts can be obtained online at www.duchyofcornwall.org.
£millions Sovereign Grant Funding 1.201
The Sovereign Grant funding covers two specific areas of official costs incurred in support of The Queen as Head of State. These are Property Services and Travel. Travel costs for official engagements have increased by £86,000. This figure varies from year to year depending on the countries Their Royal Highnesses are asked to visit on behalf of Her Majesty’s Government. Official costs relating to the London office and official residence have decreased by £224,000 as a rolling programme of refurbishment continues. All other expenditure for The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry is met by the Duchy of Cornwall funding explained above. More details about the Sovereign Grant are available at www.royal.uk or may be obtained from the Deputy Treasurer to The Queen, Buckingham Palace, London SW1A 1AA.
£millions Government Departments 0.557
For The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall, Government Departments meet expenditure in respect of the provision of staff on secondment from the Armed Services and some costs of official overseas visits undertaken at the request of Her Majesty’s Governments
Greenhouse Gas Emissions
Household emissions from energy use have decreased by 6% this year; emissions from official UK and other travel have fallen by 10%. Combined, these result in a reduction in Household emissions of 9%.
A very busy schedule of overseas engagements, following a relatively quiet prior year, resulted in an increase in emissions from official overseas travel of 286%. Combining all sources – within and outside of the Household’s control – gives an increase of 92%.
The total travel emissions figure will vary from year to year depending on the distances Their Royal Highnesses are asked to travel, at the request of Her Majesty’s Government or the Government(s) of The Queen’s other Realms. The aim is to minimise these emissions by taking carbon as well as cost, security and logistics into account when planning travel.
100% of the electricity used by the Household and 86% of office and domestic energy, as a whole, is now from renewable sources (including renewable electricity and Green Gas). Just under half of this is generated on-site by solar panels, biomass boilers and heat pumps. Further details are given in the main Sustainability Report.
All emissions are balanced out by buying credits from sustainable forestry projects.
£millions Official duties and charitable activities 8.523
Over 51 per cent of The Prince of Wales’s after-tax income from the Duchy of Cornwall was spent on official and charitable duties. Of the £8.523 million, staff costs accounted for £5.418 million, or 64 per cent.
The Prince of Wales employs directly 136.5 full-time equivalent staff. Of these, 118.3 support Their Royal Highnesses in undertaking official duties and charitable activities, and 18.2 are personal, garden and farm staff. The table in the ‘Staff’ section lists staff by Household department and also gives the total cost, including salaries and other expenditure, of each department.
£millions Sovereign Grant funding: London office and official residence 0.190
Clarence House is the London office and official residence for The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall. It is used for official dinners, receptions and meetings, as well as for offices for Their Royal Highnesses’ official staff. The principal rooms, which are on the ground floor of Clarence House, are open to the public from August until the end of September annually. The Household also has offices in other parts of St. James’s Palace. The Sovereign Grant for official residences meets the cost of the maintenance of Clarence House and of the other offices at St James’s Palace.
£millions Sovereign Grant funding: Official travel by air and rail 1.011
An important part of The Prince of Wales’s role as Heir to The Throne is, with The Duchess of Cornwall, to bring people together around the UK, to act as a focal point for national life and to represent the country overseas. This involves a significant amount of travel that needs to be undertaken in a way that meets efficiency, security and presentational requirements. In 2017-18, Their Royal Highnesses travelled over 55,000 miles to and from official engagements in the UK and overseas on behalf of the Government. About half of the miles travelled were overseas. The majority of the costs of the journeys to non-Realm countries, amounting to £1.011 million in 2017-18, were met by the Sovereign Grant. The majority of costs of journeys to Realm countries are met by those countries.
This figure includes the variable costs only for journeys undertaken using The Queen’s Helicopter and the Royal Train. This is because the fixed costs are incurred irrespective of whether the aircraft and train are used and do not result from undertaking specific journeys. For a full explanation, see the Sovereign Grant Annual Report 2017-18 at www.royal.uk.
Greenhouse gas emissions from official travel were 3,124 tonnes. Within this, 2,254 tonnes came from overseas travel.
£millions Overseas tours and military secondees 0.557
The Foreign and Commonwealth Office meets the cost of official visits abroad by The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall (except for travel costs, which are met by the Sovereign Grant funding for official travel by air and rail).
Two members of the Equerry’s Office and one of the Orderlies are officially seconded from the Armed Forces to assist The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall in undertaking official duties.
£millions Tax 4.854
The Prince of Wales pays income tax voluntarily on the surplus of the Duchy of Cornwall after deducting official expenditure, applying normal income tax rules at the 45 per cent rate, and pays tax on all other income and capital gains like any private individual. The £4.854 million includes VAT. If employer’s National Insurance contributions and Council Tax are included, the total increases to £5.3 million.
£millions Non-official expenditure 3.003
In addition to paying for the official duties of The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry, some charitable activities and The Prince’s tax liabilities, the income from the Duchy of Cornwall is used to meet non-official expenditure of The Prince of Wales and his family.
Non-official expenditure covers the salary costs of 8.0 full-time equivalent personal staff, including personal secretaries, chefs and valets. In addition, there are 10.2 full-time equivalent estate, farm, garden and stable staff. Personal expenditure also includes the appropriate share of the cost of Highgrove House in Gloucestershire and Birkhall on the Balmoral Estate in Scotland, and of maintaining the estate and garden at Highgrove. The garden is a valuable charitable asset, and was visited last year by over 32,500 people, raising over £600,000 for charitable causes.
The costs of The Home Farm, The Prince’s organic farm on the Highgrove Estate, are included under this heading. The Home Farm is a working farm established by The Prince of Wales to demonstrate the commercial and environmental benefits of organic and sustainable farming. It was visited by approximately 860 people last year.
As at and for the year to 31 March Full-time
Principal Private Secretary and Assistants 3.0 Private Secretaries’ Office Private Secretary 0.5 Deputy and Assistant Private Secretaries 6.0 Research and Administrative Staff 15.1 Correspondence 3.0 Human Resources 6.0 33.6 2,759 Treasurer’s Department Treasurer and Assistants 2.8 Finance 7.6 Archives and Inventory 5.8 16.2 1,221 Communications Communications Secretary and Assistants 4.0 Deputy and Assistant Communications Secretaries 2.0 Communications Officers and Digital Engagement 5.0 11.0 806 Master of the Household’s Department Master of the Household and Assistants 4.5 Equerry 1.0 Programme and Travel Co-ordinators 4.6 Butlers 1.3 Chefs and Kitchen Porters 4.4 Orderlies 5.1 Reception 1.0 Chauffeurs 3.0 House Managers and Housekeepers 8.9 Valets and Dressers 2.5 Gardeners and Estate Workers 21.2 57.5 3,737 Total Official Staff as at 31 March 2018 118.3 8,523
The principal office of The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall, where most of their staff work, is in Clarence House and other parts of St James’s Palace in central London. The cost of maintaining the fabric of the buildings, as well as a proportion of the costs of utilities and fixed-line telephones, is met from Sovereign Grant funding. There are also offices for official staff at Their Royal Highnesses’ residences of Highgrove and Birkhall to assist The Prince with his continuing work. Some costs incurred at Highgrove and Birkhall are, therefore, charged to the ‘Official duties and charitable activities’ expenditure category.
Staff and Office Organisation
The Principal Private Secretary
The Principal Private Secretary is the senior member of The Prince of Wales’s and The Duchess of Cornwall’s Household and is responsible for all aspects of running the Household and for overseeing His Royal Highness’s charitable and other interests.
The Private Secretaries’ Office
The Private Secretary is responsible for the day-to-day running of the Private Secretaries’ Office. He and the other Private and Assistant Private Secretaries facilitate and support The Prince of Wales’s and The Duchess of Cornwall’s official duties, engagements and charitable activities. They are responsible for Their Royal Highnesses’ diaries, arrange briefing sessions, receptions and other functions, administer correspondence, and co-ordinate research and briefing to support their work. Each Private Secretary is responsible for specific areas and for liaising with certain of The Prince’s and The Duchess’s organisations. They also ensure that His Royal Highness is kept informed about topical issues, provide him with background information for his correspondence and meetings, and prepare drafts for speeches and articles. The Private Secretaries are supported by researchers, personal assistants and administrative staff, and work closely with their colleagues in other households.
The Prince of Wales, The Duchess of Cornwall, The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry receive a large number of letters each year. In 2017-18, for example, they received 53,716 letters and cards. People from all over the world write to Their Royal Highnesses, although the majority of the letters are from the UK.
Letters cover a wide range of subjects and are often prompted by current issues and debates. Their Royal Highnesses see a wide selection of the correspondence and reply to many of the letters they receive. The Prince personally wrote 1,396 letters in 2017-18. The Duchess of Cornwall personally wrote 1,739. Their Royal Highnesses ensure that letters not answered by themselves or their Private Secretaries are replied to by the Correspondence Section on their behalf. In addition, The Prince and The Duchess receive many requests from a wide range of charities and other organisations for donations or items for auction. Requests for donations and items to auction are handled by The Prince of Wales’s Charitable Foundation. While it is not possible to respond to all the many requests for items to auction, His Royal Highness donates items such as lithographs of his watercolours, signed books and tours of the garden at Highgrove. Each year, these items raise tens of thousands of pounds for charity.
The Human Resources Department, which sits within the responsibilities of the Principal Private Secretary, provides a team of staff and a highly productive working environment, which allows the staff to maximize their contribution to Their Royal Highnesses’ official and private lives at all times. It is responsible for all aspects of The Household staffing, including structure, search and selection, inward and outbound secondments, remuneration and benefits, training and development, internal communications, all employee health and wellbeing and employee relations matters. As well as shaping and delivering work-related training experiences, the department also supports all staff with career development opportunities across the Household and the institution.
The Treasurer’s Office
The Treasurer’s Office is responsible for Finance and Archives and Inventory. The Office is also responsible for information systems across the Household. The Treasurer is the Executive Director of The Prince of Wales’s Charitable Foundation with oversight and responsibility for the Foundation’s activities, including its trading subsidiaries. In addition, the Treasurer monitors the financial affairs and activities of The Prince’s Charities. As Executive Director, he is responsible for the Charities Office which has a primary role to facilitate collaboration within and between The Prince’s Charities, and to act as the key liaison between different stakeholder groups. The Charities Office provides support and advice to the charities covering corporate governance, due diligence, donations policy and fund raising, planning, finance and communications. The costs of the Charities Office are met by The Prince of Wales’s Charitable Foundation.
The Treasurer is also responsible for publishing, contractual and legal matters. The Finance Department exercises financial control through a combination of annual budgets, reforecasts, monthly management accounts and a series of accounting systems and procedures, particularly for the authorization of expenditure. It is also responsible for achieving best value for money and works with the Master’s Department on procurement. The majority of the Household’s information technology systems are provided and supported by the Information Systems Management section at Buckingham Palace, with the Household’s cost met by The Prince of Wales.
Three Archivists are responsible for managing all the papers and files relating to the public life of The Prince of Wales since the late 1960s. The Keeper of the Archives also manages requests for The Prince and The Duchess to become patron or president of organizations, as well as requests relating to existing patronages and presidencies. One inventory controller and two assistants are responsible for the recording and safekeeping of gifts and assets owned by Their Royal Highnesses.
As Heir to The Throne, there is extensive public and media interest in the activities of The Prince of Wales, as well as in his wife, The Duchess of Cornwall. The Clarence House Communications Office helps to facilitate a better understanding of The Prince of Wales’s and The Duchess of Cornwall’s work and activities. The Communications Office handles all media enquiries and proactive communications, including features, documentaries and events, for The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall and liaises closely with Royal Communications colleagues in respect of general issues to do with the Monarchy.
www.princeofwales.gov.uk is a popular information resource for the media, researchers and the public from the UK and overseas. In addition to the latest news about Their Royal Highnesses’ engagements, the site provides information about their work and charitable activities, as well as recent speeches and articles, biographical details, and extensive pictures.
Master of the Household’s Department
The Master of the Household is responsible for the programme of engagements for The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall, the Equerry’s Office, Their Royal Highnesses’ residences, offices and gardens, personal staff, receptions and all entertaining. The Master of the Household, in conjunction with the Metropolitan Police, is also responsible for security and is jointly responsible for confidentiality. The Equerry’s Office manages Their Royal Highnesses’ diaries on a daily basis and plans the longer-term programme. The Equerry’s Office also manages the logistical and transport arrangements for official visits at home and abroad. There are usually several overseas visits a year. The Equerry is a serving military officer seconded from the Armed Forces to the Household for a period of approximately two years.
Each year, The Prince and The Duchess receive thousands of invitations from a wide range of public and private sector organisations. Each is given careful consideration by Their Royal Highnesses and their staff. The Equerry liaises with the Private Secretaries, the Press Office and key organisations to ensure that each year in their visits The Prince and The Duchess cover a broad range of interests and meet a wide cross-section of people in as many parts of the country as possible. The Equerry also provides a point of contact for military and defence issues. The Prince of Wales maintains close links with the Armed Forces, not just in Britain but also in the Commonwealth.
The Prince of Wales conducts Investitures at Buckingham Palace (nine in 2017-18) and attends state functions on behalf of The Queen. The Equerry’s Office is responsible for the arrangements for these engagements.
Official entertaining is an important part of The Prince of Wales’s and The Duchess of Cornwall’s role. These occasions range from receiving official guests and foreign dignitaries to giving dinners and concerts to thank those involved with The Prince’s and The Duchess’s charities.
The Master of the Household’s Department also includes Orderlies (who maintain office equipment and are responsible for office supplies, stationery and office cars) and Receptionists, and it has responsibility for health and safety.
The Master of the Household’s Department is also jointly responsible for other Royal Residences, including Highgrove. Last year, over 32,500 people toured the garden at Highgrove, taking the total number of visits since the garden was opened to the public in 1992 to 491,676. Visitors were also able to buy items from the Highgrove shop, which donates all its profits to the Foundation. In addition, those attending summer official receptions normally look around the garden. Committed to conserving Britain’s natural heritage, The Prince uses the garden as a conservation area for endangered varieties of plants, flowers and trees, and hopes that those who visit enjoy seeing the benefits of natural land management and organic gardening.
The Prince and The Duchess make a number of visits to Scotland and Wales every year. The cost of these longer annual visits, which principally relates to receptions and dinners, amounted to £25,446 in 2017-18, and is included in ‘official entertaining’ expenditure.
Working at The Household
The Household of The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall employs people across a broad spectrum of disciplines and skill sets that assist Their Royal Highnesses in fulfilling their prominent role in public life. As an employer, the Household prides itself on being committed to its staff and encouraging individuals to grow and thrive within the organisation.
The Household has welcomed summer internships, work experience placements and school visits, in order to provide a greater understanding of working life within this energetic organisation.
Their Royal Highnesses devote much of their lives to environmental and social causes, through the charities and initiatives they support and the engagements they undertake.
This section sets out some of the positive contributions the Household makes in support of Their Royal Highnesses. It also sets out its main environmental impacts, which arise from travel, office and domestic energy use, and sustainable farming at Highgrove.
Supporting people, organisations and communities
Support for people, communities and organisations is a major part of The Prince’s vision and work and a primary focus for his charities and engagements programme. This year the Household supported Their Royal Highnesses in undertaking 619 engagements involving over 60,000 miles of travel – almost double the number of miles in the previous year. A total of £9.1 million – over 57 per cent – of after-tax income was spent on official duties and charitable activities.
Their Royal Highnesses’s engagements are intended to cast a light on excellence and achievement in communities across all sectors of society, to bring people together in support of community-based initiatives and endeavours, to promote and protect traditions that are shared and valued by people from many different walks of life and to act as a focal point for local and national unity and cohesion.
Year to 31 March 2018
Funds raised for The Prince’s Charities 160 Expenditure on official duties and charitable activities (8,523) Total taxes paid (4,854) Total number of official engagements 619
Since The Prince of Wales founded The Prince’s Trust over 40 years ago, His Royal Highness has been a leader in identifying charitable need and setting up and driving forward charities to meet it. His charities have grown to represent a broad range of areas including the Built Environment, the Arts, Responsible Business and Enterprise, Young People, Global Sustainability and Rural Affairs.
Much of the work of The Prince’s Charities is focused on creating, developing and strengthening communities. A total of £160 million was raised by the Prince’s Charities this year. A total of £4.854 million was paid in taxes this year, including income tax, VAT, employer’s national insurance and council tax.
Greenhouse gas emissions
Greenhouse gas emissions arise primarily through the burning of fossil fuels for transport, heating and lighting, and from agriculture at the Home Farm.
Emissions from energy use fell for a second year in a row, by 6% (2017: 4%) due to less use of fossil-fuels; emissions from official UK travel and other Household travel fell by 10% as a result of less travel in support of Their Royal Highness’s engagements in the UK. Emissions from the Home Farm fell due to changes in livestock numbers and year-on-year fluctuations as part of the crop rotation. Further details are given in the sections below.
Year to 31 March
CO2 e emissions
Office and domestic energy use 147 155 UK official and other travel 870 964 Household emissions 1,017 1,119 The Home Farm at Highgrove 1,832 1,965
While emissions vary each year, the aim is to ensure they are minimised by investing in renewable energy and ensuring travel is planned with carbon as well as cost and logistics in mind. This year 86% of energy (including green gas and electricity) came from renewable sources and just under half of this was generated on-site by solar panels, biomass boilers and heat pumps.
Official overseas travel is considered separately below as it is on behalf of Her Majesty’s governments and not under the Household’s control.
The Household balances out its emissions to zero by investing in sustainable forestry projects; for each tonne emitted the Household buys a carbon credit representing a tonne stored or saved through planting trees and avoided deforestation.
The table below shows the mix of energy sources used across the offices and residences and the resulting carbon emissions. Fossil-fuel use has been reduced by 9% this year contributing towards a 6% reduction in net emissions.
Year to 31 March
Office and domestic energy use
On-site renewable energy 1,249 1,271 Electricity and gas (renewable sources via the grid) 1,537 1,505 Total from renewable sources 2,786 2,776 Electricity, gas and oil (non-renewable sources) 442 485 Total energy use 3,228 3,262 CO2 e emissions 2018
Gross carbon emissions (location-based) 594 592 Net emissions (market-based)1 147 155
Travel to and from engagements within the UK and overseas forms a core part of Their Royal Highnesses’ working lives. The carbon emissions associated with this travel, supporting staff travel and private travel, are considered in planning, alongside cost, security and other considerations.
Year to 31 March 2018 2017 Official UK and overseas travel Miles travelled by air and rail: UK 12,565 16,523 Engagements undertaken: UK 457 451 Miles travelled by air and rail: Overseas 48,853 16,813 Engagements undertaken: Overseas 162 88 Expenditure on official travel £0.986m £0.925m CO2e emissions 2018
Overseas official travel 2,254 584 UK official travel 376 506 Subtotal: official travel 2,630 1,090 Other travel 494 458 Total: travel 3,124 1,548
The reduction in emissions from UK official travel reflects a reduction in the number of miles travelled – this year saw a particularly busy overseas schedule.
Official travel outside the United Kingdom is undertaken at the request either of Her Majesty’s Government, or the Government(s) of The Queen’s other Realms. Emissions vary each year with changes in the tours programme. Emissions increased sharply this year, by 286% due to a very busy schedule of overseas tours including four long-haul tours – to the Caribbean, Canada, the Far-East and Australia. In the previous year most travel was to countries closer to the UK. Scheduled, rather than chartered, aircraft were used on several occasions to help reduce emissions and costs.
Expenditure on official travel increased by 7% due mainly to the additional costs of the additional overseas travel undertaken this year.
Year to 31 March
Measured water use
Total measured mains water use 9,511 10,193
Water use varies each year according to various factors including the number and type of events and the amount of rain. It has fallen this year as underground leaks found last year have been repaired. Where possible, alternative sources of water are used such as collected rainwater or water from boreholes. Other measures to reduce water use include the use of dual-flush toilets, low-flow showers and water-free car cleaning products. The Household also uses a range of cleaning products that are designed to reduce their impact on waterways.
Alongside the usual recycling arrangements for paper, card, metals and plastics, the Household has for many years sent food waste (e.g. vegetable peelings, bones) from the London offices to be turned into fertiliser and generate renewable energy. Staff tea-points have bins to collect tea bags and other small bits of food waste as well as the main kitchens.
Where possible, other waste is composted on-site. Food waste is minimised by careful meal planning and re-use of leftovers.
The Household sends the majority of its plastic waste for recycling and is taking action to reduce its single plastic use. It has used glasses and ceramic mugs and cups rather than disposable cups for over a decade. Kitchens have chilled water dispensers that are connected to the mains, so plastic bottles aren’t needed.
The Household’s environmental and social impacts extend beyond its own activities and these are considered when choosing goods and services and suppliers.
Businesses that have been granted a Royal Warrant for goods or services supplied to the Household have, since 1990, been required to demonstrate they understand and take a responsible approach to environmental and social issues. An independent committee, assisted by Business in the Community and the Household, reviews how the companies respond to a wide range of sustainability and social issues including climate change, endangered species, labour standards, genetic modification, deforestation and waste management (including use of plastics). Currently some 170 businesses hold His Royal Highness’s Warrant. The Household also engages with other key suppliers on environmental and social matters.
Duchy Home Farm
His Royal Highness began the conversion of The Duchy Home Farm to an organic farming system over thirty years ago. It produces a wide range of meat and cereals as well as fruit and vegetables. It is an exemplar for sustainable agriculture, with over 1,000 people visiting each year to learn about holistic farming principles and practices that promote healthy soil, livestock and produce.
Duchy Home Farm has, by today’s standards, relatively small herds of cattle that spend as much time outside as the weather allows – at least six months. The cattle have a low stocking density giving them plenty of space to roam. They have a grass (rather than corn or soy) based diet, the majority of which is grown on-site or locally. This means the farm doesn’t contribute to tropical deforestation from soy growing.
Using and enhancing natural capital
The farm is run in a way that protects and enhances natural capital. All farm production results in a range of environmental and social impacts. The positive benefits, often not accounted for in an organic farming system, include:
Greater biodiversity: most of the land is farmed in rotation producing a range of crops and livestock. The estate has over 300 acres of species-rich permanent pasture with over 80 different plant species in some fields. This encourages a wide range of insects, birds and other wildlife.
Food security: working within closed cycles and reducing dependency on imported feed and fertiliser helps reduce the reliance on unsustainable fossil fuels and market volatility.
Healthy living soil: this is a key part of natural capital and underpins organic agriculture. Management practices are focused on protecting and enhancing the living part of the soil. Traditional crop rotation uses legumes such as clover to take nitrogen from the air and hold it in the soil for the benefit of the following crops. Animal manure from winter-housed cattle is composted and spread back on the land, recycling vital nutrients and promoting healthy soil.
High standards of animal welfare: all livestock are kept in ways that allow them to express their natural traits; pigs and sheep live outside all year round; dairy and beef cattle are at pasture for at least six months of the year and housed during the winter when they are fed silage and hay based diets. Antibiotics are used only when prescribed by a vet as necessary for the welfare of the animal.
Greenhouse gas emissions
Greenhouse gas emissions are an unavoidable impact of agriculture; at the Duchy Home Farm they come mainly from nitrogen in manure and crops, and from livestock. The farm is managed to try to minimise emissions through the careful timing of manure applications and the sowing of plants that ‘catch’ the nitrogen. By incorporating cattle manure and plant matter in the soil, significant quantities of carbon can be stored, reducing net greenhouse gas emissions. Avoiding energy-intensive artificial fertilisers reduces greenhouse gas emissions in the supply chain. Steps are also taken to reduce fossil fuel use such as solar thermal heating and solar panels that reduce grid electricity use.
Year to 31 March
CO2e emissions1 tonnes tonnes Energy use 198 217 Livestock and manure 1,681 1,807 Crops and other sources 45 33 CO2 capture in woodland2 (92) (92) Total emissions 1,832 1,965 Other resource use Energy use (MWh) 872 932 Mains water use (‘000s litres) 5,605 4,139
- Emissions are estimated using a standard methodology and are subject to significant error margins due to the complexity of the factors affecting emissions.
- CO2 capture in woodland is estimated using woodland areas, tree species and age and excludes changes in soil carbon. It is not expected to change significantly in the short-term.
Greenhouse gas emissions remain fairly constant in the system established on the farm, fluctuating each year with changes in the number of livestock, the amount of crops harvested and the amount of energy needed to work the soil and dry crops. This year’s emissions from livestock have fallen due to a reduction in the number of cattle. Emissions from crops have increased this year following an increase in the tonnage of crops harvested.
Energy use varies each year according to the amount of fuel needed to plant, harvest and dry crops which in turn depends on the weather and the year-on-year variations in crops planted. Mains water use varies each year with changes in livestock and other factors. After particularly low use in 2017, it has returned to average levels. A borehole is also used to obtain some water directly from the source, bypassing the water treatment plants and distribution network.