NEW YORK – The Irish Food Board (Bord Bia) has joined the United Nations Global Compact (UNGC) which supports corporate sustainability efforts. The membership is significant as the organization continues a campaign to spread the word about grass-fed Irish beef that is produced using sustainable farming practices.
As part of the UNGC, members are required to align business practices with 10 principles that encompass human rights, labor, the environment and anti-corruption. Members also agree to advance Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) established by the UN. Ireland’s national sustainability program, Origin Green, already aligns with nine of 17 SDGs.
“The Irish Food Board is honored to join the United Nations Global Compact and pledge our support to upholding the 10 principles of the UNGC,” Irish Food Board CEO, Tara McCarthy said. “Membership of the UNGC further underlines the Irish Food Board’s commitment to promoting the Sustainable Development Goals within the Irish food and drink industry through the development of Origin Green, Ireland’s national food and drink sustainability program.”
More than 50,000 farmers — representing 90 percent of all beef produced in Ireland — participate in the Sustainable Beef and Lamb Assurance Scheme under Origin Green. Auditors use handheld technology to track carbon efficiency, waste management, traceability, biodiversity, daily live weight gain and fertilizer and nitrogen use, and other data points.
The Irish Food Board launched a trade promotional campaign in February at the Annual Meat Conference held in Nashville, Tennessee. McCarthy and Michael Creed, Ireland’s Minister for Agriculture, Food and Marine accompanied leading beef exporters who exhibited at the conference to highlight Irish grass-fed beef and the product’s sustainability attributes.