December 5, 2019, Calgary, AB. – The Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (CRSB) has released its annual report, highlighting key achievements over the past year. Launched in 2018, the CRSB developed the first outcome-based certification program for beef sustainability in the world and uptake is steadily increasing. “We are excited to see such strong growth in the certification program over the past year, with a 45% increase in the volume of beef that has been sold through the program, and a 16% increase in certified farms and ranches over the past six months,” says Anne Wasko, Chair of the CRSB and a rancher from Eastend, Saskatchewan. “It shows that there is demand for the program and we hope Canadians are proud of the leadership role we are taking—working together and committing to transparency and continual improvement.”
The organization also launched an online sustainability projects inventory and, through its partnership with MultiSAR, Cows and Fish, beef producer associations and the Species at Risk on Agricultural Lands program, has worked with 17 ranches and implemented 32 habitat improvements covering 189,000 acres in the Grassland Natural Region of Alberta. These improvements are made possible through funding generously provided by Environment and Climate Change Canada. “All these projects are producer driven and highlight the benefits of collaborative stewardship programs building on local knowledge and the positive impacts they can have for biodiversity and wildlife habitat,” noted Brad Downey, Biologist with the Alberta Conservation Association, one of MulitSAR's partner organizations.
The CRSB Certified Sustainable Beef Framework is a voluntary third-party audited program that certifies sustainability practices in beef production and processing covering natural resources; people and the community; animal health and welfare; food, and efficiency and innovation. The sustainability standards that form the basis of the program are measurable, based on science and expert opinion, and address key concerns around the sustainability of beef production in Canada from environmental, social and economic perspectives. The standards are outcome-based, meaning there are different ways for beef producers and processors to demonstrate sustainable practices based on their individual operation, production style, climate, region, soil type, and include responsible antimicrobial use and treating animals (when required) under the guidance of a veterinarian. Visit the newly launched website (crsbcertified.ca) for information and to learn more about beef sustainability in Canada.
At the Annual General Meeting on September 20th, CRSB members elected new Council directors Jeff Balchin of Centennial Foodservice and Jennifer Lambert of Loblaw Companies Ltd.
Watch for an Interim Report on the National Beef Sustainability Strategy, set to be released in early 2020, which identifies sustainability progress that has been made since 2016, and opportunities for further improvement.
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Community Engagement and Marketing Manager
Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (CRSB)