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TheBeefSite Newsletter - 21 January 2015

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Wednesday 21st January 2015.
Michael Priestley - Editor

Michael Priestley

Novus International

MSD Animal Health

Paradigm Shift Required for Sustainable Food

Efficient farming must take the place of input intensive agriculture in order to be sustainable, the Global Forum for Food and Agriculture heard last week.

Feeding nine billion people by the year 2050 requires a “paradigm shift” to cope with the daunting task of producing more food while managing resources sustainably.

According to Jose Graziano da Silva, World Food and Agriculture Organisation director general, farming must stop a “business as usual approach”.

He told the Berlin audience that using feed for fuel is neither good nor terrible, but part of a solution.

“It is important not to forget that biofuel emerged with strength as an alternative energy source because of the need to mitigate fossil fuel production and greenhouse gases,” he said. "We need to move from the food versus fuel debate to a food and fuel debate. There is no question: food comes first.”

Efficient cattle production is now the coordinated target of a global cattle industry striving for sustainability.

This was illustrated in Brazil last year when the world’s beef value chain descended on Sao Paulo to flesh out the principles of sustainability and define its meaning for beef production.

Present at the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef was Kim Stackhouse, National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, who talked through the “phenomenal” improvements made by the US cattle industry over the last six years.

She outlined how the Life Cycle Assessment Study, through analysing thousands of variables, was able to benchmark the US industry enabling it to quantify its sustainability and where it can improve.

“Originally started in 2010, we completed the work in 2013 showing the sustainability of US beef production had improved five per cent looking at all three pillars of sustainability – economics, social and environmental,” said Mrs Stackhouse.

“The US is widely regarded for its efficient system and the Beef Checkoff has placed the US in the lead in the development of life cycle assessments.”

Another reason why the US cattle industry leads the world is due to use of biotechnologies.

Dr Frank Mitloehner, University of California-David, told the conference that this is key in the “sustainable intensification” of the sector.

He wants prejudices to be left behind and regulators to scrutinise data on such products, giving Europe as an example of hesitance towards biotechnology in food production.

Beef Sustainability 

Find our sustainable beef hubpage by clicking here.

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Market Reports

USDA Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook - January 2015
UK Slaughter Statistics – December 2014
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Global Beef Industry News

   New Zealand

Fall in Fuel Prices Should Mean Lower Costs for Farmers
NZ Agritech Sector Worth NZ$1.2 billion


Poultry, Cattle and Sheep Can End Bangladesh Hunger


Marfrig Appoints New Chief Executive
Brazilian Agriculture Exported $6.77 billion in December


More Efficient Food Systems Needed
Lifecycle Assessment: US Beef Sustainability Improved 5 Per Cent
Can Sustainable Intensification Help Feed the World?
Why is McDonald's Passionate about Sustainable Beef?
New Research Finds Many Key Resources Have Passed Their Peak


Mostly "Good" Ukrainian Winter Crops After Big Export Year


Secure Winter Wheat for Feed Before Demand Spikes
Canadians Have Help With Body Condition Scoring
Five-point Food Strategy to Support Manitoba Producers

   United Kingdom

UK Appoints Agri Counsellor in China to Help Boost Trade
Northern Ireland Beef Calf Numbers Bounce Back
TB Tests More Effective than Badger Culls
Pneumonia Vigilance Needed as 'Wonky Weather' Grabs Headlines


China Boosts Financial Support to Agriculture
Chinese Farm Produce Prices Rise Slightly

   United States

Cargill Sells Texas Cattle Feed Yard to Californian Company
CME: How Do 2015 US Meat Expectations Fit With Longer Term History?
Cattle Outlook: Christmas Beef Averaged A Dollar More This Time
Sales in US of Animal Health Products $7.5 Billion in 2013
CME: Will Good Pork, Beef Demand Remain in 2015?
Profitability: Don't Forget the Cattle
USDA Offers $18 Million to Support, Train New Farmers and Ranchers
USDA Reports to Support Corn Prices


India Seeks Australian Collaboration in Fisheries, Agriculture and Aquaculture Sector


Solutions to Save Half of Chile's Dog-Savaged Livestock


French Abattoirs in Crisis as AIM Goes into Receivership


Promoting Humane Animal Handling Slaughter in Liberia

   South Africa

Government Implements Measures to Safeguard FMD Free Zone Status

   European Union

Transboundary Animal Diseases: What are the Risks in the EU?


The Drost Project - A Visual Guide to Porcine, Pig Reproduction.
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