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Agricultural News

Beef Sustainability Study Offers Inside Look Into the Many Positives Brought to the Table by Beef

Mon, 11 Mar 2013 21:00:51 CDT

Beef Sustainability Study Offers Inside Look Into the Many Positives Brought to the Table by Beef

Improving beef production today to protect tomorrow. That's the reason the beef industry has been investing checkoff dollars in something called the Beef Sustainability Study over the last couple of years. A key player on the producer's side of that has been Richard Gebhart, a cattle rancher from northeastern Oklahoma. He is currently the National Cattlemen's Beef Association's chairman of its Federation Division. Gebhart says the sustainability study is vitally important to the beef industry.

"When you look at a lifecycle assessment model you've got to look at the three pillars of sustainability. Classically, people talk about the economic, the environment, and the social impact in there. I prefer to talk about the financial and the environmental and the social."

He said that, obviously, a business has to be financially stable otherwise it's not going to be sustainable and we all know the environment needs to be sustained as well. Gephart says the factor that intrigues him most is the social. He said their first study, the Cattlemen Stewardship Report was released in 2010 and the results might be very surprising to those who have not seen it.

"I think a lot of cattlemen would really be surprised--and I know they'd be proud--if they looked at how much cattlemen contribute to the social fabric of our society." Gephart says that through the Beef Sustainability Study he hopes to document those contributions.

By producing a study which will be submitted for certification, Gephart says it will be easier for cattlemen to tell their story and back it up with scientifically verifiable facts.

Gebhart also told us that the Beef Sustainability Study will be of tremendous value not just in telling consumers today's story of beef production- but it will also provide a roadmap for cattle producers to do things better and better in the years to come. He says the heritage that we have in the beef cattle industry is tremendous- stretching back for decades and decades- but improving our production efforts continues to be a job that cattlemen and cattlewomen enjoy doing.

The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network- but is also a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today's show- and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.



Richard Gebhart Beef Buzzes with Ron Hays about beef sustainability.
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