Cattle Australia has welcomed the endorsement of world livestock industries in a statement signed by more than 650 international scientists.
The Dublin Declaration of Scientists on the Societal Role of Livestock acknowledges the high importance of animal agriculture to feeding the world – and urges policymakers to continually refer to science in decision-making.
The declaration clearly states – farmed and herded animals are irreplaceable for maintaining a circular flow of materials in agriculture, by recycling in various ways the large amounts of inedible biomass that are generated as by-products during the production of foods for the human diet. Livestock is optimally positioned to convert these materials back into the natural cycle and simultaneously produce high-quality food. Ruminants in particular are also capable of valorising marginal lands that are not suitable for direct human food production. Furthermore, well-managed livestock systems applying agroecological principles can generate many other benefits, including carbon sequestration, improved soil health, biodiversity, watershed protection and the provision of important ecosystem services.
Further, livestock-derived foods provide a variety of essential nutrients and other health-promoting compounds, many of which are lacking in diets globally, even among those populations with higher incomes The highest standards of bio-evolutionary, anthropological, physiological, and epidemiological evidence underscore that the regular consumption of meat, dairy and eggs, as part of a well-balanced diet is advantageous for human beings.
This declaration makes clear what our producers already know – well-managed beef production systems have crucial roles in providing food and fibre in addition to delivering important environmental benefits.
The cattle industry is a proud custodian of nearly 80 per cent of Australia’s agricultural land and our industry clearly recognises its role in the sustainable management of that land.
Find out more about the Dublin Declaration at www.dublin-declaration.org