NORTH SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA – Meat & Livestock Australia (M.L.A.) recently launched a major environment communications program known as Red Meat Green Facts, which includes an advertising print campaign in metropolitan newspapers, a new consumer Web site, social media activity and a public relations campaign.

The Red Meat Green Facts campaign has two key objectives, according to David Palmer, M.L.A. managing director, — to positively position the industry as good environmental citizens to the urban community and to defend the industry against negative comments about red meat.

"The ultimate aim is that when consumers are at the butcher or supermarket that they are confident to buy beef or lamb because they trust the industry that produced it and the way it was produced,” Mr. Palmer said. "Another key element of the program is to defend ourselves against incorrect facts and figures. This will be achieved through a new Web site, which provides a one-stop-shop for media and those people who are seeking detailed information about red meat and the environment in an Australian context.”

Red Meat Green Facts was developed following in-depth consumer research that explored urban populations' understanding about red meat and the environment, which revealed that they had little understanding about food production or the people that produced it.

A series of advertisements began appearing in weekend newspaper magazines across the country for four weeks starting May 15. The advertisements focus on reinforcing the widely-held belief that as caretakers of large parts of the country, Australian beef and lamb farmers care for their animals and the environment.

The advertisements have been designed to take a subtle, indirect approach to ensure the community remains confident that Australian red-meat producers are trustworthy and ethical — they care for their animals and look after their land to produce the best beef and lamb in the world.

To help urban Aussies appreciate and understand the efforts of this industry, the Red Meat Green Facts campaign will use the real stories of eight environment advocates in media articles to provide personal accounts of what beef and lamb producers do every day to manage the environment.