Latest from Brussels

MEPs Mean Business on Live Exports

The European Parliament last week called on member states to step up enforcement of existing rules on protecting livestock during transport. MEPs are urging member states to ramp up spot checks, use tracking technology to monitor compliance, and apply tougher penalties for offenders. Transport times should be cut, but the preference is to phase out live exports altogether in favour of local slaughtering. And when animals are transported to non-EU countries, EU standards should be applied. […]

Main stories

Recharging Soils with Carbon Could Make Farms More Productive

‘Farm land could work as carbon sinks,’ said Dr Jan Mumme, an agricultural engineer at the University of Edinburgh in the UK. ‘This probably wouldn’t work with intensive livestock farming, but sustainable crop production and integrated farm systems (a balance between crops and livestock) could do it – and biochar is one way to help.’ […]

Latest from key partners

#SoilMatters – So How Did Our Authors Treat It?

Here we summarise and provide links to all eight contributions to the soil matters article series. From soil and the city to no till, humus and technical articles from soil scientists, there is much in here to cause wonder, controversy and, it is hoped, greater understanding. […]

Main stories

#SoilMatters Part 3 | Soil, Carbon and Policy – where now for 4p1000?

The role of farming in climate change mitigation is controversial and fraught. The UN COP (Conference of Parties) Climate Change has tentatively introduced soil and carbon sequestration into its workings, via 4 pour 1000. However the role of particular agronomic practices involving livestock is under special scrutiny. Does livestock release more than it sequesters, or does the farming model matter? What about deep carbon storage? And how will policy makers work with new research and 4p1000? […]

Latest from the ARC network

Does Grass-Fed Provide a Unique Advantage Anymore?

‘Grass-fed’ is now widely used across the global market place for bovine products. It is loosely defined and can mean anything from 51% of the animal’s diet coming from grazed grass and forages to 100% fed on grass. ‘Grass-fed’ is now so common place that one must ask whether it retains any great value as product differentiation. Has ‘grass-fed’ seen its day? And how should sustainable food move forward? […]

Latest from EU Member States

New Report: Policies For Better Livestock Farming

A recent report for Eating Better points out that future policies towards livestock farming and trade in the UK and EU should support a shift to healthy sustainable diets. More coherent approaches to environmental objectives such as climate change, protecting nature and high animal welfare should be developed. […]

Latest from key partners

New TTIP Report Reveals Corporate Takeover of Meat

By Shefali Sharma, European Director IATP, 12.07.2016 The Institute for Trade Policy’s European Office, along with international group Compassion in World Farming (CIWF), German member of Via Campesina—Arbeitsgemeinschaft bäuerliche Landwirtschaft e.V. (AbL) and PowerShift launched their new report Selling Off the Farm: Corporate Meat’s Takeover through TTIP with a panel discussion and a press briefing at the European Parliament on the 12th July. Some key findings from the report: Many new agricultural and food technologies are being developed or already utilized with limited or no regulation. TTIP will make rulemaking in the public interest much more difficult in the future for technologies such as gene editing and cloning. Labour and environmental regulations related to the meat industry are inadequate on both sides of the Atlantic and need to be strengthened. Trade unions and environmental campaigns have achieved incremental gains; however, TTIP is likely to make it difficult to improve regulations. The chilling effect of TTIP’s (de)regulatory cooperation provisions will make it increasingly challenging in the future to effectively regulate impacts of the meat industry on climate change […]