Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 26

SUSTAINABILITY

At the producer level, NCBA identifies five key areas regarding the environment and cattle production. These are cattle grazing and the land, positive effects on wildlife, environmental stewardship and water and air quality. The efficiency of American agriculture is another way in which NCBA examines the industry’s sustainability. The increase in productivity over many years is a key way the industry reduces the environmental impact of beef production, says NCBA. Through science-based improvements in breeding and animal nutrition, beef production per cow increased from about 400 lbs. in the mid-1960s to 637 lbs. in 2008, it says. The US calf crop, in the meantime, decreased from 43 million head in 1964 to 36.1 million head in 2008, yet the amount of beef produced increased from 18 billion lbs. to 26.7 billion lbs., says NCBA. It also notes

The American Meat Institute created a special website devoted to explaining where the meat and poultry industry stands on a number of areas that come under the sustainability umbrella. (Photo courtesy of AMI)

The increase in productivity over many years is a key way the industry reduces the environmental impact of beef production.
that there are now 29 cuts of beef that meet USDA’s criteria for lean, vs. only seven in 1990. Nearly half of all US beef producers generate and/or use some type of alternative energy on their operations, according to a survey of beef producers, it says. Today’s American farmer feeds about 144 people worldwide, says NCBA. In 1960, that number was 25.8, according to the Agriculture Council of America (ACA). If the beef production practices from 1955 were used today, 165 million more acres of land (an area almost the size of Texas) still could not equal today’s beef production, it says. A Washington State Univ. study reinforces the significant improvement in productivity. The study notes that the industry in 2007 produced 11.9 billion kg. of beef from 33.7 million

head slaughtered, a 28 percent increase in beef yield per animal compared to 1977. Yet, modern agricultural practices are often demonized, with the popular perception that beef production was more environmentally friendly in the “good old days,” it says. The study concludes that productivity is a key factor in reducing the environmental impact of US beef production. Improved genetics, nutrition and management have considerably reduced the environmental impact of modern beef production, it says.

Taking the lead
Meanwhile, several major meat and poultry companies have taken the lead in sustainability initiatives because of their public exposure. These companies include Tyson Foods, Cargill Inc., JBS USA and Smithfield Foods. Tyson and Smithfield annually produce sustainability and/or corporate social responsibility reports that exceed 100 pages in length. The American Meat Institute has also played a prominent role. It has created a special website devoted to explaining where the meat and poultry industry stands on a number of areas that come under the sustainability umbrella. AMI’s explanations include the following: caring for the environment; caring for animals; benefiting communities; ensuring safe, nutritious meat

and poultry. AMI says a sustainable meat industry is one that takes a longterm view of a business’s impact on natural resources, animal welfare, employees, consumers and the communities in which we work and live. The association launched its own sustainability initiative in 2009. A key component was an assessment of what sustainability practices were already in place in the industry. By benchmarking the industry’s efforts, AMI can measure progress in the future, it says. AMI also generated a web-based sustainability survey to gather information from the industry. The survey requested specific data on a variety of topics, including water and energy use, recycling, worker safety statistics, food safety, animal welfare practices and community outreach. AMI compiled the data to calculate an industry average, which can now serve as a sustainability benchmark. When the survey is repeated in the future, says AMI, the 2009 information will enable the industry to measure how the industry has changed over time and note progress in the various subject areas. The American Meat Institute also offers a 12-page sustainability inventory to help meat and poultry companies determine what they are already doing in the various areas of sustainability, what they might do in this area and what practices simply are

26 • Meat&Poultry • March 2011 • www.MeatPoultry.com



Meat&Poultry - March 2011

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Meat&Poultry - March 2011

Meat&Poultry - March 2011
Commentary - Defense mechanisms
Hormel earnings up 34 percent in first quarter
Cargill introduces Fressure patties
Maple Leaf earnings hit by input costs
Sanderson Farms touts record FY2010
Grant allows XL Foods to double capacity
Townsends poultry ops sold after bankruptcy
JBS reports positive results of food-safety technology
Taco Bell launches new beef image TV ads
Catfish inspection gets political
Sustainability strides
E xperience counts
THE TOP 125 PROCESSORS - Winner’s circle
THE TOP 125 PROCESSORS - Alphabetical listing by company name
THE TOP 125 PROCESSORS - by rank
Small Business Matters - Duty calls
Food Ingredient Solutions - Delectable pairings
Processing Innovations - Everything but the squeal
Sanitation - Cleaning passion
Food Safety - Reassigning resources
Food Safety - Food-safety fortress
Packaging Solutions - Packaging under pressure
New Product Rollouts - Unveiling ideas
New Products
Labor - Questioning benefi ts
Names in the News
New Product Showcase
Classified Advertising
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Meat&Poultry - March 2011
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 2
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 3
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 4
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 5
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 6
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 7
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Commentary - Defense mechanisms
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 9
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Hormel earnings up 34 percent in first quarter
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 11
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Maple Leaf earnings hit by input costs
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 13
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Sanderson Farms touts record FY2010
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 15
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Townsends poultry ops sold after bankruptcy
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 17
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Taco Bell launches new beef image TV ads
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 19
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Catfish inspection gets political
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 21
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Sustainability strides
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 23
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 24
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 25
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 26
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 27
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 28
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 29
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - E xperience counts
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 31
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 32
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 33
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 34
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 35
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - THE TOP 125 PROCESSORS - Winner’s circle
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 37
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - THE TOP 125 PROCESSORS - Alphabetical listing by company name
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 39
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 40
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 41
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 42
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - THE TOP 125 PROCESSORS - by rank
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Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 57
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 58
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 59
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 60
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 61
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Small Business Matters - Duty calls
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 63
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 64
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 65
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 66
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 67
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Food Ingredient Solutions - Delectable pairings
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 69
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 70
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 71
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 72
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 73
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 74
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 75
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Processing Innovations - Everything but the squeal
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 77
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 78
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 79
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 80
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 81
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 82
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Sanitation - Cleaning passion
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Food Safety - Reassigning resources
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 85
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 86
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 87
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Food Safety - Food-safety fortress
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 89
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 90
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 91
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 92
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 93
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 94
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 95
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 96
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 97
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Packaging Solutions - Packaging under pressure
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 99
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 100
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 101
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 102
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 103
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 104
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - New Product Rollouts - Unveiling ideas
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - New Products
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 107
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Labor - Questioning benefi ts
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Names in the News
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - New Product Showcase
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 111
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 112
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 113
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 114
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 115
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 116
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - Classified Advertising
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 118
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 119
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 120
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 121
Meat&Poultry - March 2011 - 122
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