Red meat production proven efficient and safe
31 Jan, 2010 04:00 AM
ANIMALS need to be produced in a smarter manner - not in fewer numbers - to address environmental issues related to climate change, according to Frank Mitloehner, an associate professor and air quality specialist at the University of California-Davis.
Decreasing meat and milk production will only result in more hunger in poor countries - not a cleaner or cooler environment, he said in response to critics of meat and milk production who blame livestock for significant global warming.
Mitloehner said these critics fail to understand the relationship among animal and food production, animal digestion, human activities and atmospheric chemistry.
He traced much of this lack of understanding to two sentences in a 2006 United Nations report, Livestock's Long Shadow, which stated that the "livestock sector is a major player, responsible for 18 per cent of greenhouse gas emissions measured in carbon dioxide equivalents. This is higher than transport."
He said findings in the US show that livestock production accounts for only 2.8pc of emissions in the US, while transportation accounts for 26pc.
In addition to being efficiently produced, environmentally sustainable and safe, meat might well be behind the reason people live longer lives than any other primate, according to biologist Caleb Finch at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, Cal.
Apes and chimpanzees are genetically similar to humans but rarely live more than 50 years, and it is possible that genetic changes that allow people to live longer are attributable to eating a more carnivorous diet than apes and chimps, he told the LiveScience program on TechMediaNetwork. Read More
When we look at the facts concerning meat production, the undeniable benefits become quite clear. Whether it’s human nutrition or the environment, livestock play an important role that can’t be replaced. Our task as producers of this essential product is to share this information with consumers. Not only does this give you a chance to introduce yourself and give the consumer a chance to meet a farmer, but it also gives them exactly what they want and that is to hear a real farmer or rancher explain what they do and show them how much they care about their livestock. I love sharing information like this because every time you do, you see the lightbulb flip on in the minds of consumers. It suddenly makes sense and they can really gain an appreciation for where their food comes from. ~Troy