What's in the news right now about environmentally sound, socially responsible and economically viable beef value chain.


Register Now
for the Global Conference on
Sustainable Beef !
Join us at the Lyrath Estate Hotel, Kilkenny, Ireland
between 9th and 12th October.

Executive Director's Message

Last week saw two major meetings around the theme of deforestation and climate change, both in San Francisco. These were the GCF task force meeting on 10–12th, and the Global Climate Action summit on 12th–14th.

Several of our members attended these meetings, including corporate members implementing commitments to eradicating deforestation from their supply chains, as well as NGOs involved in both processes. I attended a side meeting organised by GRSB member Earth Innovation Institute on Jurisdictional Sustainability.

If you followed the various links in the preceding sentences, you will note that many of the same actors are involved in both. I have been participating in the meetings on Jurisdictional Sustainability for some time, and feel that the concept is ripening to the point that will make it a valuable partner to our member roundtables in relevant countries.

The first thing to realise about the concept is that over time it has evolved to be about a more holistic model of sustainability than just reductions in deforestation. The second is that it seeks to recognise continuous improvement, as does GRSB.

While it's not only about deforestation, that is still the major issue driving this, and the 39 jurisdictions involved are all in 12 countries that together contain 28% of the world's tropical forests.

For companies that have set targets for eradicating deforestation from their supply chains, the combination of a roundtable for sustainable beef and a national or state level jurisdictional approach offers potential to deliver. Given that now both exist in several states of Brazil, in Colombia and Mexico, it is time for us to look for ways for the two approaches to complement and enhance one another.

Thank you!

All members' primary contacts received an email notification last week regarding nominations for the Board of Directors elections. Please submit your nominations using the link in the email.

If you have not received the email, or have any questions regarding the nomination procedure, please contact Kraig Roesch at kraig.roesch@grsbeef.org
Ruaraidh Petre
Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef
Executive Director

The State of Jurisdictional Sustainability
Earth Innovation Institute Website | 2018 Report
Jurisdictional approaches to sustainable development hold tremendous potential for advancing holistic, durable solutions to the intertwined issues of tropical deforestation, rural livelihoods, and food security. With many jurisdictional "experiments" underway around the world, the time is ripe for a systematic assessment.

Earth Innovation Institute (EII), the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), and the Governors' Climate and Forests Task Force (GCF–TF) are collaborating on a comprehensive study of these experiments across the Tropics to draw on early lessons.

More specifically, the study evaluates progress towards low–emission, sustainable development, including goals and commitments, monitoring and reporting systems, multi–stakeholder governance platforms, and innovative policies and initiatives that are core elements of jurisdictional sustainability.

Brazil Cuts Deforestation Emissions Below 2020 Targets
Reuters | August 9, 2018
Brazil cut its greenhouse gas emissions from deforestation in 2017 to levels below its internationally agreed 2020 climate change targets, the country's Environment Ministry said on Thursday.

Brazil reduced its emission from deforestation in the Amazon rainforest by 610 million tonnes of carbon dioxide (CO2), compared to its 2020 target of 564 million tonnes. In the Cerrado savanna, emissions were reduced 170 million tonnes of carbon dioxide versus a target of 104 million tonnes.

The Amazon, the world's largest tropical rainforest, and the Cerrado, South America's biggest savanna, soak up vast amounts of carbon dioxide and their preservation is seen as vital to the fight against climate change.

Global Climate Actions Summit: Influential Private Sector Coalition to Halt Deforestation In Brazil's Cerrado Region Sees Rapid Growth
Global Climate Action Summit Website | September 13, 2018
Scathing new report blames major food companies for "massive water pollution, dead zones" and "climate change."

At a session of the Global Climate Action Summit today it was revealed that investors managing over US$5.6 trillion in assets have now joined a coalition of large food companies to sign a Statement of Support for the Cerrado Manifesto.

The coalition, launched in October 2017, is now the largest business group focused on halting forest conversion in the Cerrado, with over 100 signatories on the Statement of Support.

Food Companies And Farmers Active at Climate Action Summit
Sam Fromartz, Food & Environment Reporting Network Ag Insider | September 12, 2018
If the Trump administration's effort to stymie action on climate change is having an impact on food and farming, it isn't apparent at the Global Climate Action Summit underway in San Francisco this week, which features representatives from around the world.

At a side event ahead of the main conference, corn and soybean farmer Fred Yoder said farmers would get on board and help fight climate change as long as they had a seat at the table. "If we're going to get this done, farmers have to have skin in the game," said Yoder, past president of the National Corn Growers Association.

He spoke at the 30X30 Forests, Food and Land Challenge, which argues that food, land, and farming can deliver 30 percent of the solutions to tackle climate change by 2030.

View More News

One Health Series: A Clearer Picture of Antibiotic Resistance
NIAA /Merck News Release, Drovers Magazine | August 30, 2018
Dr. Justin Welsh of Merck Animal Health is part of the National Institute for Animal Agriculture (NIAA) One Health initiative to address resistance in both animal and human health. He says while the concern regarding antibiotics use is growing, the full picture helps keep the issue in perspective.

"Antimicrobial resistance is really an interesting topic to start; it's been around forever, as long as we've been around. Bacteria have been developing resistance for eons, it's not a new concept," says Welsh.

Sustainable Beef Pilot Continues to Expand  
Alberta Farmer Express | September 4, 2018
The payment to producers fell slightly, but the sustainable beef pilot attracted a new restaurant chain and Ontario producers will soon be able to participate.

The Canadian Beef Sustainability Acceleration pilot project, launched last fall, tracks cattle and beef produced under certified sustainability standards from ranch to retailer. In the latest quarter, more than one million pounds of beef were produced and processed under the Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef standards, Cargill said in a news release.

The per–head credit for the third quarter was $18.52, compared to $20.11 per head in the second quarter and $10 in the first quarter. The money comes from grocery store chain Loblaws along with restaurant chains McDonald's Canada, Swiss Chalet, and Original Joe's.

The 10 Worst Sustainable Business Practices  
Bob Langert, GreenBiz | September 10, 2018
I recently teamed up on a panel with Kim Stackhouse–Lawson (director, sustainability, JBS USA; and chair of the U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef) and Carlos Saviani (VP, markets and food, World Wildlife Fund) to assist in establishing a sustainability initiative in the food supply chain facilitated by the Context Network.

We were asked to feature the best and worst practices to avoid in establishing a sustainability program and strategy. Our presentation sparked an eye–opening dialogue with the audience, so in this column we teamed up to share our insights. We'll start with the worst practices. The next column will feature the best.

  1. Single–impact–driven decisions
  2. Lack of robust, transparent, measurable and time–bound commitments
  3. Failure to assign a monetary value to sustainability
  4. Getting paralyzed by risk aversion
  5. Letting others define your brand
  6. Seeing NGOs as the enemy
  7. Picking winners and losers
  8. A one–size–fits–all approach
  9. Listening without a commitment to truly understand the perspective of others
  10. Satisfied to play defense
View More News

Cattle producers throughout Europe and North America have had a challenging summer in terms of weather; this comes at the same time as a number of other pressures for Irish farmers:
IFA Urges Ag Minister to Take Urgent Action on Income Crisis in Livestock Sector
The Beef Site | September 10, 2018
IFA National Livestock Chairman Angus Woods said livestock farmers are under immense income pressure from falling cattle prices, increased costs, severe weather conditions all year and the erosion of direct payments.

He said the income crisis in the livestock sector must be urgently addressed by Agriculture Minister Michael Creed and he cannot allow Budget 2019 pass without delivering on the IFA proposal for the introduction of a €200 targeted payment for suckler cows.

Industry Welcomes New Australia–Indonesia Trade Agreement
Beef Central | September 1, 2018
Tariffs on major Australian agricultural exports to Indonesia will fall following the conclusion of Indonesia–Australia Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (IA–CEPA) negotiations on Friday.

Colorado Beef Industry Struggling Amid Drought, Wildfires and Tariffs  
Meghan Lopez, The Denver Channel | September 1, 2018
Cattle ranchers in Colorado are struggling to make ends meet after a particularly dry year in the state.

"This is one of the worst droughts that we've seen in my lifetime," said Retta Bruegger, a regional specialist in range management for Colorado State University.

At least 65 percent of the state is experiencing an extreme drought. Because of that, some ranchers are being forced to make tough decisions, including selling their cows sooner than they normally would and at lower weights. That means the ranchers are making less money per cow than they normally would.

Sustainable Beef Will Become the New Standard for Producers Worldwide  
Carmen White, Alberta Farmer Express | September 7, 2018
Carmen White, 15, of Claresholm was the junior winner in the Alberta Young Speakers for Agriculture competition at the Calgary Stampede. Her topic was: What is sustainability and why does it matter to Canadian agriculture?

Canadian agriculture is constantly evolving to meet the needs of society. Beef producers, like myself and my family, have a lot to consider when planning for the future. We have a mostly urban customer base, a more health–conscious consumer, and a closely examined beef industry.

As the world's population continues to grow, sustainability is more than just a buzzword. Many would consider it a requirement.

First 25t Container of Irish Beef Reaches China  
Conor Finnerty, Agriland | September 12, 2018
The first 25t container of Irish beef has recently reached Chinese shores, Bord Bia has confirmed. The product, from ABP, was purchased by Beijing Hopewise – a prominent Chinese import company specialising in online and foodservice sales, the Irish food board added.

Furthermore, Bord Bia's Shanghai office is currently rolling out a marketing and promotional campaign to support the sale of Irish beef online and introduce Irish beef to wholesalers, chefs and foodservice customers

Study Shows Success Of Sustainable Intensification
Cambridge Network | September 13, 2018
Nearly one–third of the world's farms have adopted more environmentally friendly practices while continuing to be productive, according to a global assessment by 17 scientists in five countries.

The researchers, including Dr Zareen Bharucha from Anglia Ruskin University's Global Sustainability Institute, analysed farms that use some form of 'sustainable intensification', a term for various practices, including organic farming, that increase crop yields while simultaneously improving ecosystems on and off farm, and build strong agricultural communities. Writing in the journal Nature Sustainability, the researchers estimate that nearly 163 million farms worldwide, covering over a billion acres, now practice some form of sustainable intensification, often with dramatic results.

View More News
Administrative Offices:
13570 Meadowgrass Drive, Suite 201
Colorado Springs, CO 80921 USA
Phone: 1-719-355-2935
Fax: 1-719-538-8847
Email: admin@grsbeef.org
Copyright ©2018 Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef. All rights reserved.
You are receiving this message as a benefit of membership to the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef