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Agricultural News

U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef Sets Course Toward Continuous Improvement

Wed, 22 Jul 2015 13:13:07 CDT

U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef Sets Course Toward Continuous Improvement More than 120 beef producers, retailers, foodservice operators, processors, academics, allied industry partners and non-governmental organizations gathered in Denver on July 14 and 15 for the first U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef General Assembly meeting. Their common goal: continuously improving beef sustainability.

"Continuously improving beef sustainability requires the cooperation and collaboration of every segment of the beef value chain, from the rancher to the consumer," said USRSB Board Chair Nicole Johnson-Hoffman of Cargill. "The General Assembly meeting was really the first opportunity we've had to gather the membership of the USRSB in one location to set a course toward establishing criteria and actions to achieve mutually agreed upon goals."

The primary outcome of the two-day event was to align members to five objectives of the USRSB: 1) the establishment of sustainability indicators; 2) development of a method to verify those indicators; 3) creation of a program philosophy for implementing sustainability objectives; 4) generation of field projects that prove sustainability concepts; and 5) establishment of goals for progress.

"Cattle producers are committed to raising a sustainable, safe and nutritious product for consumers around the world," said USRSB Chair-Elect John Butler, a Kansas cattle producer. "The USRSB allows everyone in the beef value chain to work together to positively shape the industry for future generations."

Throughout the two-day event, attendees reviewed sustainability efforts in the crop, dairy and potato industries, as well as results of beef sustainability pilot projects in Florida and Canada. Three USRSB working groups - Indicators and Goals for Progress, Verification, and Field Projects - met to discuss their objectives, scope of work and next steps.

USRSB members also voted to ratify the following Board of Directors during the business meeting:

Allied: Mark Shaw, Micro Technologies; Jennie Hodgen, Merck Animal Health

Civil Society: Nancy Labbe, World Wildlife Fund; Chad Ellis, Noble Foundation

Processor: Nicole Johnson-Hoffman, Cargill (Chair); Cameron Bruett, JBS

Producer: John Butler, Beef Marketing Group (Chair-Elect); Ben Weinheimer, Texas Cattle Feeders Association

Retail: Brittni Furrow, Walmart; Susan Forsell, McDonald's Corporation

The U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef was formed in March 2015 and has 93 founding members. It is a multi-stakeholder initiative developed to advance, support and communicate continuous improvement in sustainability of the U.S. beef value chain.

Learn more at usrsb.org. For more information, please contact Nikki Richardson at nrichardson@beef.org or 303.850.3357.



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