DALLAS, TX., Feb. 22, 2012 – Today, leaders of the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef announced the formation of an independent, non-profit organization to advance continuous improvement across the global beef industry. By adopting a set of statutes and bylaws that will guide its work, the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef formalized the organization’s commitment to a global beef supply chain that is environmentally sound, socially responsible and economically viable.
The founding members of the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef include: AllFlex, Allianca de Terra, Cargill, Elanco, Grupo de Trabalho da Pecuaria Sustentavel (GTPS), JBS, McDonald’s, Merck Animal Health, National Wildlife Federation, Rainforest Alliance, Roundtable for Sustainable Beef Australia, Solidaridad, The Nature Conservancy, Walmart and World Wildlife Fund.
”We are pleased to announce that we have officially registered as an international legal entity. Today’s announcement reaffirms our collective support of activities that deliver measureable, science-based outcomes that are focused on high priority environmental and industry-related issues,” said Ruaraidh Petre, President of the Roundtable. “More efficient, environmentally sustainable approaches to bringing beef from farm to fork will help conserve our planet’s finite resources while also supporting our communities and our members’ bottom lines.”
The Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef will now be registered under Article 60 of the Swiss code, allowing it to support local, regional and national roundtable members who propose new innovations, technologies and share best practices in beef production systems. It will also be a conduit to several million Euros the Dutch government has already pledged for new trainings and technologies to improve the efficiency and productivity of smallholder and frontier farmers. These funds will be administered by Solidaridad for qualified field projects involving Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef members during the next four years.
The roundtable approach has served as an effective tool to empower global commodity stakeholders to voluntarily improve the environmental and social impacts of production while maintaining profitability for popular items such as seafood, soy and timber. Comprised of representatives from industry, non-profit organizations, associations, academia and think tanks, the roundtables strive to identify measurable, scientific ways to reduce environmental impact and to empower the value chain to implement solutions.
“We are encouraged that these major stakeholders in the beef industry are committed to work together to create a more sustainable beef supply chain,” said Jason Clay, World Wildlife Fund’s Senior Vice President for Markets Transformation. “At World Wildlife Fund, we recognize that these collaborative efforts are instrumental to our goal of preserving the most important biological places on earth and, ultimately, living in harmony with nature.”
Since the Global Conference on Sustainable Beef in November, 2010, the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef has initiated a series of dialogues in key beef producing regions to share information and practices across the diverse beef industry. Member roundtables are being developed in Argentina and Australia, and strategic alignment has been established with The Working Group on Sustainable Beef in Brazil. The organization has also received the endorsement of the Consumer Goods Forum on matters associated with beef. Moving forward, the Roundtable encourages new members to join the effort that are committed to a more sustainable beef system.
In May 2012, the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef will participate in meetings in Australia with its affiliates at the Australian Beef Conference. The Roundtable intends to host the second Global Conference on Sustainable Beef later this year so that stakeholders around the world may review the new statues and bylaws, constructively engage on their key issues and set their course for future activities.