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Agricultural News

Bruett Shares the Good News of Global Beef Sustainability at Texoma Cattlemen's Conference

Tue, 24 Mar 2015 19:24:12 CDT

Bruett Shares the Good News of Global Beef Sustainability at Texoma Cattlemen's Conference Forget about the haters and focus on the rest. That was the message delivered by Cameron Bruett, who is the head of Corporate Affairs for JBS-USA, one of the major meat processors in the United States and globally. Bruett said agriculture too often engages with people who don't want or desire our product, when the vast majority of Americans love, want and enjoy our product every single day.

"So, when we are dealing with these threats to our industry - whether it be animal welfare activism or environmental activism, I think we always have to keep in mind that Americans are meat eaters," Bruett said. "They love our product."

Radio Oklahoma Network Farm Director Ron Hays interviewed Bruett at the Texoma Cattlemen's Conference Saturday.   Click or tap on the LISTENBAR below to listen to the interview.

Bruett believes sustainability is a great conversation starter between producers and consumers. He said this provides farmers and ranchers a tremendous opportunity to share who we are, what we believe in, why we do what we do and how our values align with consumers. Bruett said this involves more than agriculture telling its story, but also engaging in a dialogue to address the concerns of consumers.

"It's up to us to engage in that constructive dialogue to help educate consumers, to reflect their concerns through our appreciation for their viewpoint, but to speak the truth and to speak it proudly," Bruett said.

JBS is involved with the global roundtable on sustainable beef. Bruett said it's important to be involved in this effort as it brings the segmented value-chain all together to discuss common challenges. He said this effort establishes a common baseline for sustainability, but it does not set standards on how agriculture will meet sustainable outcomes. In the interview, he also discusses the U.S. roundtable for sustainable beef, which shows that when it comes to producing beef no one can sustainably compete with the U.S.

American agriculture is under attack from those against modern production agriculture. The latest being the New MacDonald campaign that criticizes both farming and meat production. Bruett agrees these groups are becoming more vocal and aggressive because they are not seeing a commensurate response. The U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance has worked to combat some of these notions in having ag producers become spokespeople, but he believes more of those messages against agriculture need to be challenged.

Bruett advises American producers to embrace sustainability as an opportunity versus a threat. He said this is way to look at the social, economic, environmental challenges and opportunities going forward for future generations.

The beef industry is fighting perception especially in developed countries, where people are not concerned about where their next meal is coming from.   Bruett said these concerns are not being discussed in countries like Africa, China or India. He said creating a system that is relevant for Europe and for the wealthy, will result in having people die from starvation, so the U.S. needs be very rational and sober about addressing sustainability by empowering people.

"Anything that promotes systems that produce less with more, I believe its immoral because we have a huge challenge of feeding the world before us," Bruett said. "We need to take that on in a rational and very focused manner."

Bruett is confident farmers will rise to the challenge of producing food for nine billion people by the year 2050.

Click here to hear his complete presentation at the Texoma Cattlemen's Conference in Ardmore.



Ron Hays interviews Cameron Bruett of JBS
right-click to download mp3


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