Carbon Neutral Livestock Production — Consumers Want It and Farmers Say It Is Achievable
Angus Verley, Aneeta Bhole, Tyne Logan and Lydia Burton, ABC.net.au | June 7, 2019
Meat and Livestock Australia (MLA) believes a zero carbon footprint nationally — considered by some the holy grail for the red meat industry — is possible by 2030.
It is a target that has the backing of some of the industry's leading farmers, and the demand for projects is on the rise. Climate Friendly, a carbon farming project developer, said the policy was a "hotbed of action". Carbon farming projects are on the rise with 700 projects on the go Australia-wide. Globally, livestock production contributes about 14 per cent of human-related greenhouse gas emissions.
Since 2005 the beef industry has reduced its emissions by around 60 per cent, so getting it to zero by 2030 is achievable, the meat industry says.
Beef + Lamb New Zealand Environment Strategy
Beef + Lamb NZ.com
A new blueprint to lift the environmental performance of New Zealand's sheep and beef sector has been unveiled by Beef + Lamb New Zealand.
The Environment Strategy lays out a progressive long-term vision for the sector based around four priority areas – healthy productive soils, thriving biodiversity, reducing carbon emissions and cleaner water.As part of the plan, B+LNZ has identified two key goals – every sheep and beef farm having a tailored and active environment plan by the end of 2021, and the sheep and beef sector as a whole moving towards carbon neutrality by 2050.
Over the next three years, B+LNZ will roll out a range of environmental initiatives to support sheep and beef farmers. This includes establishing a Collaborative Catchment Communities programme to help communities work together to target water quality, greenhouse gas emissions, biodiversity, and soil health issues. The organisation will also invest in developing a new generation farm plan that encapsulates these four priorities, develop new tools and technology, provide support and advice and undertake research.
"As a sector we have an opportunity for our sheep and beef farmers to be world-leading stewards of the natural environment and sustainable communities," says Sam McIvor, chief executive of B+LNZ. "Sheep and beef farmers have made meaningful improvements to their environmental performance and lowering emissions and they deserve credit for these gains.
'A Major Step Forward': Brazil Founds Trade Group for Carbon-Neutral Meat
Niamh Michail, Food Navigator | February 25, 2019
The newly-formed Brazilian Association of Carbon-Neutral Meat Producers will develop both supply of, and demand for, carbon-neutral meat.
Scientists from Embrapa, Brazil's agricultural research corporation first began working on the concept of carbon neutral beef back in 2012. In 2015 it launched a trademarked front-of-pack label that producers can add to fresh, frozen or processed beef for both domestic and export markets.
A Carbon-Neutral Burger? It's Not Impossible.
Ula Chrobak, Popular Science | October 7, 2019
Beef has become one of the central villains of the climate crisis. But though it's true that global figures on beef's carbon hoofprint are worrisome, they perhaps also gloss over the complex system that these cows are a part of. There are many, many ways of producing burgers and steaks—and some ranchers argue cattle can actually be a force for good. In fact, cattle might play a surprising role in mitigating climate change. If done right, grazing can heal grasslands and enable them to stow away more carbon from the atmosphere, even becoming carbon-negative systems.
Cattle production is inseparable from grasslands. Beef cows—both grass- and grain-fed—start their lives on a pasture, explains Ermias Kebreab, a professor of animal science at the University of California, Davis. After about a year to a year and a half, cows are either sold to a feedlot or continue grazing until slaughter. Feedlot cows are fed a high-calorie, often grain-based, diet on which they fatten quickly. Finishing cows on grass takes about three to six months longer, since grass is less calorie-dense.
Achieving Net Zero - Meeting the Climate Change Challenge
National Farmers Union (NFU)
The NFU has outlined the policy, mechanisms and support required from government and other stakeholders in order for agriculture to meet the NFU's aspiration of net zero by 2040.
At the Oxford Farming Conference in January 2019, NFU President Minette Batters announced the NFU's ambition to achieve net zero for agriculture by 2040.
Mrs Batters made it clear at a meeting of the NFU's Council that this aspiration for net zero should not reduce farmers' ability to produce high quality, affordable British food or reduce farm income. Equally, the UK must not achieve its climate change ambitions by exporting UK production, or greenhouse gas emissions, to other countries.
In June 2019, the UK became the first major world economy to set a target for achieving net zero on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions into law, with then Prime Minister Theresa May committing the UK to net zero emissions by 2050. With the industry, and domestic agricultural policy now at such a turning point, the NFU believes it is vital that farmers and growers are at the forefront of shaping how future climate change policy is delivered. For the past 10 years, NFU climate experts have led talks across industry and government to discuss ways of reducing the greenhouse gas emissions produced from agriculture.
Agriculture is uniquely placed to be part of the solution to climate change, as it is both an emissions source and a sink as farming processes capture carbon dioxide (CO2), from the air and turn it into a wide range of foods, fibres and fuels. Farmers also have the ability to protect carbon reserves already present in soils and vegetation.
Five Founders: Carbon Neutral Beef Delivered On a Plate
Mark Phelps, Queensland Country Life | July 25, 2019
"We studied the market and quickly realised that people increasingly want produce that not only delivers the highest quality eating experience but respects their affinity for environmental and animal care," Mr Cummins said.
"Consumers are more environmentally conscious than ever and this is especially the case among younger generations such as millennials, who want confidence they are buying sustainable products.
"NAPCo has always prioritised our animal welfare and environmental practices and embracing carbon neutrality has been a natural progression of this."