Dear GRSB Member,

As this gets sent out, many of us are preparing for our board meeting in San Antonio Texas, at which we will welcome our new, larger board of directors and will elect a new executive committee. This is therefore also the time that we will see some of the previous members of the board and executive committee step down.

I would like to thank all those who have served on the board over the past three years; I know that the time invested competes with your day to day work so it is much appreciated. In particular I would like to thank our outgoing president, Cameron Bruett. Cameron and JBS have shown themselves willing to invest time and resources to make GRSB what it is today through speaking at numerous events, recruiting many new members, and representing GRSB in a positive and diplomatic way everywhere. JBS has be elected to continue as a board member so Cameron will doubtless be actively involved in GRSB going forward.

I would also like to thank Gary Johnson from McDonalds who is stepping down from his Executive Committee and Board functions having been with GRSB since the very beginning, his time and commitment has been very much appreciated.


Ruaraidh Petre
Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef
Executive Director

Sustainability News

At White Oak Pastures, Grass–Fed Beef Is Only the Beginning

Dateline: 03/10/15, Source: By Kim Severson, NY Times

With two of his three daughters and about 100 cowboys and meat cutters, Mr. Harris operates White Oak Pastures, the largest organic farm in Georgia and the South's most diverse. He grows vegetables and raises 10 species of animals, most of which roam around in a model of farming based on the way animals graze on the Serengeti plains. Goats goof off near a pile of sleeping hogs. Chickens wander past cows. Sheep hang out with ducks. The idea is that together, the animals make a stronger ecosystem. Some eat certain plants but not others. Some species eat the feces of others. All totaled, the animals and pasture are healthier for it.

Knowledge Important to Secure a Sustainable Agri–Food Future – McGuinness

Dateline: 04/03/15, Source: By Margret Donnelly, AgriLand

In order to secure a sustainable future for the agri–food sector, a knowledge–driven, highly efficient and environmentally–conscious approach to farming is required, according to MEP Mairead McGuinness.

Making Electricity with Manure Goal of New Grant

Dateline: 04/07/15, Source: By Logan Hawkes, Southwest Farm Press

According to USDA, more and more agricultural operations are investing in alternative energy sources such as solar panels to replace or supplement power from the grid, and, to a lesser extent, wind–powered generators small enough to power a single water pump or large enough to power a barn, an office or an entire farm. Coming soon, dairies and other large livestock operations, including feedlots, could convert methane gas from cow manure to provide heat and electricity, possibly enough to sell back to the grid.

Learning About Sustainable Farming

Dateline: 04/14/15, Source: Irish Farmers Journal

Our study, which concluded that Irish Angus has a lower carbon footprint when compared to continental breeds such as Limousin, fits well with the sustainable farm initiative. The Kildalton Open Source study focuses on four key pillars with economic sustainability being highlighted throughout each: resource use efficiency which includes water, energy and nutrients; land management to enhance biodiversity; animal welfare and health and safety. These four headings prove extremely important for the future of agriculture in my opinion, especially with the topic of sustainability being so important to modern farming.

What Makes a Farm Sustainable? Hint: Size Doesn't Matter

Dateline: 04/08/15, Source: By Suzy Friedman, Environmental Defense Fund

When it comes to sustainable farming, the reality is that "big" does not equate to "bad," and "small" doesn't necessarily mean "good." In fact, it's the wrong debate altogether. Arguing about a farm's size won't deliver environmental benefits. In the end, it's all about performance – not size

Members In The News

Restaurants Balance Sustainability with Supply, Cost Issues

Dateline: 04/07/15, Source: By Jonathan Maze, Nation's Restaurant News

Numerous chains have also recently announced plans to eliminate human antibiotics in chicken supplies, including Chick–fil–A and McDonald's. For years, poultry suppliers have used small doses of antibiotics to encourage the growth of chickens. But concern that such use contributes to the rise of antibiotic–resistant "superbugs" has led to a push to halt such use. KFC has felt pressure to do the same, but the company indicated that the FDA is working on a requirement for companies to stop using human antibiotics in chickens by 2016.

Save Money, Live Sustainably?

Dateline: 03/30/15, Source: By David Brodwin, US News

Wal–Mart's new program is a reminder of how hard it is to create useful sustainability ratings. American consumers have begun to care more about sustainability and to express their concerns as they shop. Increasingly, consumers want to know how the stuff they buy affects the planet and how it affects the people who produce it and sell it.

Lessons from Apple and Walmart: 4 Ways to Really Cut Supply Chain Risk

Dateline: 04/09/15, Source: By Sumit Kumar, Green Biz

Recent history has presented many examples of well–known companies — Apple, Walmart, Target, Primark and Tesco, to name a handful — facing the ire of customers, investors and governments due to flaws in their supply chains. As a result, it is increasingly clear that unsustainable supply chains can have negative reputational, as well as financial, implications. That realization is now elevating the sustainability of supply chains for organizations worldwide.

Zoetis Grants Fund Cattle Health, Productivity Research

Dateline: 04/02/15, Source: Farm Futures

Zoetis is seeking applications for its 2015 Cattle Call research grant program, offering up to $150,000 in research funding. This program, started in 2012, supports researchers and veterinarians who perform valuable work to improve dairy and beef cattle health and productivity. The Cattle Call selection committee will award up to $150,000 in funding to North American researchers in animal health. Grants could range from $25,000 to $150,000 for one or multiple researchers. The committee seeks project proposals that will help develop new products and services in the cattle industry.

Big Jump in Number of Agriculture Students

Dateline: 04/10/15, Source: Radio New Zealand News

Beef and Lamb New Zealand is welcoming an increase in enrolments in agricultural courses at Massey and Lincoln universities as a sign that more school leavers are considering careers in the primary sector. Beef and Lamb, chief executive Scott Champion says Beef and Lamb is promoting agriculture as a career by providing scholarships for about 20 students a year. It also gathers students together each year to help them build networks among themselves and with primary industry organisations.

Zilmax Cleared for Component Feeding

Dateline: 04/01/15, Source: Canadian Cattlemen

Health Canada's Veterinary Drugs Directorate (VDD) has granted the makers of cattle feed additive Zilmax an expanded product label that allows for component feeding at the lower end of its dosage range — and draws the line for a maximum rate in complete feed. The updated label allows for a lower targeted dose of 60 milligrams of the drug's active ingredient, zilpaterol hydrochloride, per head per day through "one of multiple daily feedings," such as in a morning or evening feeding, Merck said. The new method, which the U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved for Zilmax last fall, gives Canadian cattle feeders "an alternative option to deliver the appropriate dose of Zilmax to cattle every day," the company said.

How Cargill Is Making Shipping Cleaner

Dateline: 04/07/15, Source: Hellenic Shipping News

When Cargill's shipping business changes course, it's sure to make waves in the industry. Cargill Ocean Transportation doesn't own any vessels, but it does charter over 500 of them, making it one of the biggest players in the sector. And Cargill is a member of several groups that promote sustainability on the high seas.

Global News

Netherlands: Trader Jailed for Two and a Half Years for Role in Horsemeat Scandal

Dateline: 04/08/15, Source: By Thomas Escritt, The National

The businessman at the centre of a Europe–wide fraud in which falsely labelled horsemeat led to thousands of tonnes of meat being recalled was sentenced to two and a half years in prison on Tuesday. A Dutch court found that two meat wholesalers owned by WillySelten had bought and processed a minimum of 330 tonnes (336,000 kg) of horsemeat in 2011 and 2012, selling it on to customers who believed they were buying pure beef.

Ireland's Beef Industry May Need Quota Protection Within TTIP Deal, Says Irish Government

Dateline: 04/07/15, Source: By Poorna Rodrigo, GlobalMeat News

The Irish government has predicted to GlobalMeatNews that American beef exports to the European Union (EU) will be limited by quotas in future, even if the EU and USA successfully negotiate a Transatlantic Trade & Investment Partnership (TTIP) deal.

Efficient Animals Produce More Beef for the Buck

Dateline: 04/02/15, Source: The Western Producer

Two bull calves standing in a pasture may look the same, but one could be more feed efficient than the other. That trait is an economic benefit to the cattle industry because feed costs are the largest expense in raising beef. Bulls that eat less but gain the same are considered more efficient and therefore more valuable be–cause the odds of them passing on that trait to progeny is high.

Our Members

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GRSB Board of Directors Meeting to Take Place in San Antonio on April 23, 2015

The meeting will take place at the Wyndham San Antonio Riverwalk.

The GRSB Global to Local (facilitated by the Consensus Building Institute) will be meeting on April 21-22. Both the GRSB Communications Committee and the Joint Working Group on Forests will take place on April 22.

The Board meeting and reception are on April 23, and we will end our week in San Antonio with a tour to King Ranch, known as the birthplace of the ranching industry in America. King Ranch is a National Historic Landmark. There are still seats available for the tour if you would like to join us! Please email to be added to the tour (cost is $75).

Click here for more information on the meeting and tour.

Welcome to the Table!

We Welcome The Newest Member to the Roundtable

Dateline: July 2014

American Feed Industry Association

Constituency: Commerce & Processing

AFIA membership includes more than 585 domestic and international companies and state, regional and national associations. Member companies are livestock feed and pet food manufacturers, integrators, pharmaceutical companies, ingredient suppliers, equipment manufacturers and companies which supply other products, services and supplies to feed manufacturers. More than 75 percent of the commercial feed in the United States is manufactured by AFIA members. Approximately 70 percent of the non–grain ingredients, including soybean meal, distillers co–products, vitamins, minerals, amino acids, yeast products and other miscellaneous/specialty ingredients are also manufactured by AFIA members.

Golden State Foods

Constituency: Commerce & Processing

Golden State Foods is one of the largest diversified suppliers to the foodservice industry, servicing 50+ customers and 25,000+ restaurants on five continents. Founded in 1947, the $6 billion company is values based with proven performance in superior quality and customer service in both manufacturing and distribution. With approximately 4,500 employees worldwide, GSF's core businesses include: processing and distribution of liquid products, meat products, produce, dairy, and other services, providing a variety of networked solutions for the total supply chain spectrum. One of GSF's global principles is to protect the environment, and it continues to strengthen that commitment as noted in its statement of environmental policy. The company also runs the GSF Foundation for kids, a non–profit organization to help children and families in need.

GrowSafe Systems Ltd

Constituency: Commerce & Processing

GrowSafe Systems Ltd joined the Roundtable in September 2014 as an Observing Member. We re–welcome them to the table in 2015 as part of the Commerce & Processing Constituency Group!

North American Meat Institute

Constituency: Commerce & Processing

The North American Meat Institute (the meat institute, or NAMI) formed in 2015 by the merger of the American Meat Institute and the North American Meat Association is the nation's oldest and largest trade association representing packers and processors of beef, pork, lamb, veal, turkey, and processed meat products. Meat institute member companies account for more than 95 percent of these products. The safety of the meat and poultry products NAMI members produce is their top priority. Many members have implemented additional food safety procedures that go beyond current Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS or the agency) regulatory requirements to ensure products are safe, wholesome, affordable, and available.ointed as managers and later partners.

Global News

Basic Info from Cattle Database Will Remain Free

Dateline: 04/01/15, Source: By Alexis Kienlen, Alberta Farmer

Cattle producers will be able to access basic data from the now privatized Beef InfoXchange System (BIXS), but may have to pay for some types of information, says the head of the company. "BIXS is totally voluntary, just like the Internet," said Hubert Lau, president and CEO of BIXSco. "You can use the Internet and do all kinds of things, and it doesn't cost you any money. But you can also go to the Internet and buy things. That's your choice. We want to create those choices." BIXSco was formed when the Canadian Cattlemen's Association struck a partnership deal with Edmonton–based ViewTrak Technologies earlier this winter.

It's Time to Invest in the Australian Cattle Industry

Dateline: 04/13/15, Source: By Dr Ross Ainsworth, BEEF Central

Warren Buffet famously said, "Buy when others are fearful and sell when others are greedy". There is a flashing light and ringing bell for investors who have a brief window of opportunity in which prices for cattle and cattle country remain constrained due to the ongoing drought while the medium and long–term outlooks are brilliant.

UK Demands for Lifetime Quality Assurance On Cattle Unacceptable – ICSA

Dateline: 04/13/15, Source: By Richard Halleron, AgriLand Ireland

Moves by the UK supermarkets to introduce lifetime quality assurance criteria on cattle will cause major problems for Ireland's beef industry, according to ICSA General Secretary Eddie Punch. He said that he had recently heard rumours of this happening in the future, and said the move would make already prohibitive criteria even more difficult to meet.

Beef Farmers Feeling the Pinch as Cattle Pile Up on Farms

Dateline: 04/11/15, Source: By Gemma Mackenzie, Press and Journal UK

Beef producers with cattle ready for slaughter are at increased risk of incurring penalties as a result of being forced to wait weeks to send beasts to slaughter. NFU Scotland this week warned the industry was at breaking point due to price pressures and marketing delays. A double whammy of weak retail demand for beef and a weak euro is hitting prices, with wholesale steers passing through abattoirs last week averaging just over 360p a kilo, down 20p a kilo on the same time last year.

Survey: Have Your Say on Animal Welfare in the Livestock Export Industry

Dateline: 04/09/15, Source: BEEF Central

The live export industry through Murdoch University has launched a survey to seek community and stakeholder views on the industry's animal welfare performance, CEO of the Australian Livestock Exporters' Council, Alison Penfold announced today.

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