A new group of U.S. beef processors, packers, retailers, producers and others on Tuesday announced the formation of the U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef.
The multi-stakeholder roundtable will identify sustainability indicators, establish verification methodologies, and generate field project data to test and confirm sustainability concepts for use throughout the United States.
USRSB considers social, economic and environmental factors in achieving beef sustainability.
"Research tells us American consumers are increasingly interested in the social, economic and environmental impacts of the beef they purchase," said Nicole Johnson-Hoffman, vice president of Cargill Value Added Meats and interim chair of USRSB.
USRSB represents the first time diverse U.S. representatives are coming together to consider and measure improvements in the sustainability of American beef going forward.
Utilizing the definition for sustainable beef recently released by the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef, the USRSB will develop sustainability indicators relevant to the various beef systems in the United States, as well as a means to verify sustainable progress in a transparent manner that can be shared.
Similar to GRSB, the USRSB will not mandate standards or verify the performance of individual beef value chain participants.
"With the establishments of regional multi-stakeholder beef sustainability roundtables in Brazil, Canada, Mexico, Colombia and now, the United States, it is clear that the international commitment to sustainable beef enjoys tremendous momentum," said Cameron Bruett, head of Corporate Affairs and Sustainability at JBS USA and president of the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef.
The interim board of directors includes representatives from Cargill, Beef Marketing Group, Texas Cattle Feeders Association, Micro Technologies, Merck Animal Health, JBS USA, McDonald's, Walmart, World Wildlife Fund, The Nature Conservancy, Noble Foundation and the King Ranch Institute for Ranch Management.
Participation will be open to individual producers, producer associations, processors, retailers, foodservice operators, allied industry and civil society.
Membership will be open to additional founding members until June 1, 2015. View a list of members at usrsb.org.