Posted Jun. 9th, 2016 byBarbara Duckworth The work to feed sustainably raised beef to the world is just beginning. A pilot project to see if a major burger company such as McDonald’s Corp. could deliver sustainably raised beef is complete, and the results show it can be done.
Results and recommendations were presented in Calgary June 2 and have been forwarded to the Canadian Roundtable on Sustainable Beef, which is developing a full fledged program to verify beef production.
Canadian cow-calf ranches, feedlots and processors participated in the two-year project, in which operations volunteered to allow private verifiers to assess how they treat their cattle, the environment, workers and the community.
High marks went to the ranchers for animal care, community outreach and environmental stewardship, but many fell short on record keeping. More work also needs to be done on the use of antibiotics.
Many feedlots are not using the verified beef program, but they have other programs to monitor pharmaceuticals and manage food safety.