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Biodiversity and Sustainable Meat Production and Consumption. Danielle Nierenberg Worldwatch Institute Green Week Brussels, Belgium June 2010 dnierenberg@worldwatch.org www.worldwatch.org. Roadmap for Environmentally Sustainable Meat Production and Consumption. Better Grazing Management

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biodiversity and sustainable meat production and consumption
Biodiversity and Sustainable Meat Production and Consumption

Danielle Nierenberg

Worldwatch Institute

Green Week

Brussels, Belgium

June 2010

dnierenberg@worldwatch.org

www.worldwatch.org

roadmap for environmentally sustainable meat production and consumption
Roadmap for Environmentally Sustainable Meat Production and Consumption
  • Better Grazing Management
  • Protecting Pastoralists’ Rights
  • Reduced and Refined Consumption
  • More Investment in Mixed-Crop Livestock Systems

Red Fulani cattle are indigenous to West and Central Africa (Photo Credit: ILRI)

environmentally sustainable meat production
Environmentally Sustainable Meat Production
  • Less Corn and Soybeans, More Grass
  • Rotational Grazing
  • Traditional Practices
  • Zero Grazing

Boy Herding Cattle in Nigeria (Photo Credit: World Bank)

grass fed and rotational grazing
Grass-fed and Rotational Grazing
  • Grass farming helps preserve native grasses, particularly in sSA
  • Pastures can act as carbon sinks, sequestering carbon in soils.

Herding Livestock in Columbia (Photo Credit: World Bank)

rotational grazing preserves biodiversity
Rotational Grazing: Preserves Biodiversity
  • A 4,800 hectare U.S. ranch using rotational grazing practices tripled the perennial species in the rangelands, while also nearly tripling beef production from 66kg to 171 kg per hectare.

Sharpe’s Longclaw, from the grasslands outside of Nairobi, Kenya are now endangered (Photo Credit: 10,000 Birds)

combining traditional and modern grazing practices
Combining Traditional and Modern Grazing Practices

Institute herd treating degraded area

(Photo Credit: Njeremoto Biodiversity Institute)

Herd grazing on grass with full summer recovery

(Photo Credit: Njeremoto Biodiversity Institute)

zero grazing
Zero-Grazing

Fatima Addy, leader of Aboomo Women’s Group in

Ghana (Photo Credit: Bernard Pollack)

Heifer International beneficiary, Madame Helen in Rwanda (Photo Credit: Bernard Pollack)

livestock diversity
Livestock Diversity
  • Unlike animals in CAFOS, or factory farms, grass-fed animals tend to be more genetically diverse.
      • Prevents the spread of diseases: H1N1, Avian Flu, Nipah Virus
      • Healthier Animals
      • Better adapted to heat and drought

Ankole Cattle, disappearing from Eastern and Central Africa (Photo Credit: ILRI)

conserving biodiversity the grasscutter
Conserving Biodiversity: The Grasscutter
  • Grasscutter
    • Slash and Burn Agriculture
    • Endangered
  • NAGRAFA breeds and raises grasscutters
    • Delicacy
    • Expanding business and bringing jobs to the community

Grasscutter at NAGRAFA in Ghana

(Photo Credit: Bernard Pollack

preserving biodiversity by protecting livestock keepers rights
Preserving Biodiversity by Protecting Livestock Keepers Rights

Samburu pastoralist discussing problems his community faces, including adapting to climate change and modernization (Photo Credit: Bernard Pollack)

importance of indigenous livestock
Importance of Indigenous Livestock
  • Bred to resist disease or survive hot climates
  • Indigenous breeds will help with climate change adaptation
  • In danger of disappearing:
    • Lulu Cattle – adapted to extreme environments, highly disease resistant and very productive
    • Criolla Mora Sheep – used for meat and wool and resistant to endoparasite infestation.

Criolla Sheep from Columbia are in danger of disappearing

(Photo Credit: ILRI)

preserving traditional breeds kenya
Preserving Traditional Breeds: Kenya
  • Governments and Agribusiness are promoting cross-breeding
  • Pastoralists are the best keepers of genetic diversity

Samburu pastoralists struggle for survival against governmental policies and drought (Photo Credit: Bernard Pollack)

preserving traditional breeds uganda
Preserving Traditional Breeds: Uganda
  • PENHA
    • “Bridge the gap between policy-makers and pastoralists”
    • Policy reform to keep pastoralists on land and conserve indigenous cattle

Boy herds cattle at a GTZ project in Aksum, Ethiopia

(Photo Credit: Bernard Pollack)

preserving traditional breeds south africa
Preserving Traditional Breeds: South Africa
  • Enaleni Farms
  • Raising endangered Zulu sheep and Nguni Cattle
  • Helping to create a DNA “hoof print” for Zulu sheep

Zulu sheep are endangered, indigenous to South Africa (Photo Credit: Enaleni Farms)

sustainable meat egg and dairy consumption
Sustainable Meat, Egg, and Dairy Consumption
  • A 2007 article in the Lancet calls on wealthy consumers to drop their meat consumption to 90 grams per day to help prevent both hunger and protect the environment.

(Photo Credit: USDA)

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Sustainable Consumption

  • Worldwide, 42 kg of meat consumed per person
  • In Belgium per capita meat consumption is 82 kg.
sustainable consumption
Sustainable Consumption
  • Heritage Foods
    • Grass-fed, humanely raised pigs, chickens, turkeys, and lambs to US consumers
    • Preserves heritage breeds of livestock
  • Niman Ranch
    • Distributes humanely-raised meat products
    • Free of antibiotics and growth promoters
sustainable consumption19
Sustainable Consumption

Germany’s food guide pyramid emphasizes lowering saturated-fat intake by eating fewer animal products.

sustainable consumption20
Sustainable Consumption
  • In 2009, city of Ghent, Belgium began promoting meatless Thursdays.
    • Printing 90,000 “veggie street maps” so that people can find the vegetarian restaurants.

City of Ghent, Belgium (Photo Credit: Telegraph)

sustainable consumption21
Sustainable Consumption
  • Johns Hopkins started “Meatless Mondays” campaign in 2003. It increased in popularity in 2009.
    • Goal is to reduce meat consumption by 15%
  • Receiving more support and press than ever
    • Star Chef Mario Batali, who redefined the way Americans eat pork, is joining the Meatless Monday campaign. His 14 restaurants will feature two vegetarian dishes on Mondays.
    • Paul McCartney, rock star and well known vegetarian, banned all meat from staff meals on his world tour.

(Photo Credit: Meatless Monday)

investing in small scale mixed crop livestock systems
Investing in Small-Scale Mixed Crop Livestock Systems

"Smallholder farmers have always shown amazing ability to adapt to changing conditions," says Carlos Sere, Director General of ILRI. "With the right kinds of support, these traditional mixed farming systems can be modified to become pathways out of economic and environmental poverty."

Boy herding sheep in Kenya (Photo Credit: World Bank)

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dnierenberg@worldwatch.org

www.nourishingtheplanet.org