Defining 'sustainable beef'
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – The Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (GRSB) recently released draft principles and criteria to help the global beef industry embrace socially responsible and sustainable production practices.
GRSB, which was formed in February 2012, is an international working group comprised of industry, non-profit organizations, associations, academia and think-tanks tasked with creating guidelines for sustainable beef production.
They define sustainable beef as a socially responsible, environmentally sound and economically viable product that prioritizes the planet (relevant principles: Natural resources, efficiency and innovation, people and the community); people (relevant principles: People and the community and food); animals (relevant principle: Animal health and welfare); and progress (relevant principles: Natural resources, people and the community, animal health and welfare, food, efficiency and innovation).
goes on to detail GRSB objectives and conditions that need to be met in order to adhere to certain principles. The document is not intended to set standards or create a certification program.
"We fully recognize that given the diversity of beef production systems around the world that local, national and regional interpretation must take place," GRSB noted in its draft document. "GRSB has agreed that the next steps will include the development of more regional-specific indicators, but we will not develop a seal, certification or comparable standard for sustainable beef."
Members of the roundtable include: Cargill, JBS, Walmart, McDonald’s, AllFlex, Allianca de Terra, Elanco, Grupo de Trabalho da Pecuaria Sustentavel (GTPS), Merck Animal Health, National Wildlife Federation, Rainforest Alliance, Roundtable for Sustainable Beef Australia, Solidaridad, The Nature Conservancy and World Wildlife Fund.