CHINA - The global meat sector is more and more under public scrutiny and it needs to demonstrate to consumers that is embraces sustainable practices and takes animal welfare into account.
This was one of the central messages from the new president of the International Meat Secretariat Guillaume Roué at the opening of the World meat Congress in Beijing at the weekend.
Mr Roué said that sustainability for the meat sector is “a journey not a solution”.
He said that meat processors needed to show their sustainable practices and they also need to show good welfare practices as part of the sustainable development of the sector.
Mr Roué called on the meat sector to expand international trade for he said that while meat trade has increased over the last decade, trade was still only 10 per cent of production.
However he hit out at difficulties the industry is facing with problems of both tariff and non-tariff barriers to trade and welcomed moves for more free trade agreements between countries that are being formed.
He said that while the sector needs to show that it is building a sustainable production system consumers need to understand that as meat is a high protein food it should not be too cheap.
He said that the sector was adapting nutrition, welfare and sustainable values around the world, but they are adapted to each region’s particular circumstances and there is a need for these differences to be recognised as all producers are becoming more and more sustainable.
Mr Roué, from France, succeeded Arturo Llavallol from Argentina as president of the International Meat Secretariat and Li Shuilong the Executive Chairman fo the 20th World Meat Congress was elected as Vice President.
The theme of the congress was Prospects for Sustainable Development and Growth of the Global Meat Industry.