The common goal of continuously improving beef sustainability brought over 120 beef producers, retailers, foodservice operators, processors, academics, allied industry partners and non-governmental organizations to the first U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef General Assembly meeting.
“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.