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'Alt Meats' Are Not the Answer for Poorer Countries
Susan Macmillan, ILRI News | September 18, 2019
It is time we recognized the vital role livestock plays across the world's developing economies. Excitement about alternative meat and dairy products is exploding. Lab–grown or plant–based, animal–free substitutes are being held up as a panacea to overcome the negative environmental and health impacts associated with the world's livestock systems.
But that assumption rests on the skewed perspectives of North Americans and western Europeans—and misses a big part of the story. In many developing countries and less affluent economies, animal–source food is less a consumer product than a vital source of income, food and livelihood. For the one in 10 people living on less than $2 a day, 'alt–meats' are unlikely to be a viable dietary solution for the simple reason that most people would be unable to access or afford them. (More in this twitter thread.)
Forward Together: Co–Operation Essential to Meet Global Climate Challenges
Professor Wayne Powell; Professor Julie Fitzpatrick, The Scotsman | September 19, 2019
The UK imports nearly half of its food. If we replace meat in our diet with food that damages the environment in its country of origin, then we have simply shifted the burden elsewhere, on to nations that may be less able to adopt sustainable practices. It therefore seems more sensible to promote sustainable livestock production (which can also be known as "ruminant agriculture") on land that cannot be used for other purposes, as efficiently as possible, with the consequent benefits to the local environment, people and rural economies.
Therefore those of us who help to shape a thriving rural economy have a responsibility to ensure that our response is evidence–based and fit for purpose. It is not a simple task. Populations will continue to rise, so we need to produce more food securely and sustainably, while simultaneously reducing the effect of this production on our shared environment.
Farmer Protests End Outside Factories – But Meat Industry Says 100,000 Cattle in Backlog
The Journal ie | September 23, 2019
Over 100,000 cattle have been backed up in processing due to protests outside meat plants around the country in recent weeks, according to Meat Industry Ireland (MII). The group says blockades have been removed from beef processing facilities across the country and some processing has recommenced in the plants. Beef processing will likely be fully operational again later this week and sheep processing has already begun in plants in the west of Ireland.
Farming Minister George Eustice Agrees to Beef Crisis Meeting with Union Bosses
Ben Barnett, The Yorkshire Post | September 22, 2019
Farming Minister George Eustice has made a commitment to meet with union bosses over concerns about the worsening crisis in the beef sector. In an attempt to reassurance farmers, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) said it was monitoring prices and volumes in all UK agricultural sectors and that it was working hard to ensure UK beef exports to the European Union will continue post–Brexit.
Did COOL Impact the Price/Demand Relationship for Beef?
Nevil Speer, BEEF Magazine, | September 17, 2019
The new USMCA (U.S., Mexico, Canada) trade agreement – often referred to as NAFTA 2.0 – has been a key topic in the news of late as Congress returns to work following the August recess. Clearly, it has large implications for all stakeholders.
Meanwhile, it's spurred efforts by some in the industry to campaign once again for mandatory country of origin labeling (COOL). That is, they believe that COOL should be part of the final agreement. Much of that argument is based upon the argument that COOL was beneficial for the cattle market. And proponents always point to the price run in '13, '14 and '15 as supportive evidence.