In this file:
· Mighty Earth Attacks Crop Farmers to Advance Anti-Meat Agenda
A report last week from Mighty Earth, a campaign of the Center for International Policy, took a break from criticizing farmers and ranchers that raise livestock for meat, and instead turned their attention to the meat companies and feed suppliers (ie. crop farmers), asking them to provide “pollution-free” feed…
· Tyson Foods condemns ‘misleading characterisation’
· 5 things Mighty Earth failed to mention about the Gulf of Mexico dead zone
Mighty Earth Attacks Crop Farmers to Advance Anti-Meat Agenda
By Sara Brown, Farm Journal, Livestock and Production Editor
via AgWeb - August 9, 2017
A report last week from Mighty Earth, a campaign of the Center for International Policy, took a break from criticizing farmers and ranchers that raise livestock for meat, and instead turned their attention to the meat companies and feed suppliers (ie. crop farmers), asking them to provide “pollution-free” feed.
In “Mystery Meat II: The Industry Behind the Quiet Destruction of the American Heartland,” Mighty Earth says “Demand for feed crops is driving widespread water contamination across the country, destroying America’s last native prairies, and releasing potent greenhouse gases.” The report claims excess fertilizer and manure washes off fields, contaminating local drinking water and creating algae blooms that cause Dead Zones in the Gulf of Mexico.
While the agricultural industry does have an impact on these issues (see here and here), the report does little to quantify agriculture’s contribution to the problem versus other industries.
The article calls out Tyson Foods, charging “America’s largest meat company” is in the “regions suffering the worst environmental impacts from industrial meat and feed production—from grassland clearing in Nebraska, Iowa, and Kansas, to manure and fertilizer pollution pouring into waterways from the Heartland down to the Gulf states.”
In a written statement to Farm Journal Media, Tyson responded “We share this group’s concern about the environment but disagree with its misleading characterization of our company. Tyson Foods is not in the business of raising the crops and we own very few livestock farms. Instead, we depend on thousands of independent farmers to raise our chickens or sell us their cattle or hogs. We work closely with our partners from farm-to-fork to identify and deploy new technologies designed to better protect the environment, our workforce, and the communities we serve.”
In an article by the Des Moines Register, Mark Peterson, a farmer near Stanton who has reviewed the report, said it may be impossible to produce "pollution-free feed." … But farmers can adopt conservation practices — such as no-till or conservation tillage, cover crops, buffers and grass waterways — that reduce nutrient losses.
The negative characterizations of the agriculture industry in the report is a long list...
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Tyson Foods condemns ‘misleading characterisation’
By Aaron McDonald, GlobalMeatNews
A report from environmental group Mighty Earth, which targeted Tyson Foods for allegedly heavily contributing towards a large ‘dead zone’ in the Gulf of Mexico, has been condemned by the meat company.
The report was created to identify the companies that are supposedly responsible for manure and fertiliser pollution contaminating water from the heartland of the US to the Gulf of Mexico. It is claimed that much of this pollution is from corn and soy used by meat companies to raise their animals, resulting in a ‘dead zone’ off the Gulf of Mexico.
According to the report, Tyson stood out for its footprint in all of the regions that suffered the most from pollution caused by industrial meat and feed production. Pilgrim’s Pride , JBS USA and Smithfield were also named as being some of the nation’s largest meat processors, whilst ADM , Bunge and Cargill were labelled as being the top grain processors.
Shared concern ...
Tyson focused on healthier animals, environment and food ...
5 things Mighty Earth failed to mention about the Gulf of Mexico dead zone
Mighty Earth blamed the largest Gulf of Mexico dead zone on the meat industry. Tyson Foods named as biggest influencer.
Cheryl Day, National Hog Farmer
Aug 04, 2017
America’s meat processors were pinned as the top companies responsible for the Gulf of Mexico “dead zone” according to a non-governmental organization, Mighty Earth’s recently released report.
Every August scientists measure the size of the Gulf of Mexico “dead zone,” an area of low oxygen that can kill fish and marine life. This year National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration researchers determine the dead zone is 8,776 square miles, an area about the size of New Jersey.
The annual forecast, generated from a suite of NOAA-sponsored models, is based on nutrient runoff data from the U.S. Geological Survey. These nutrients stimulate massive algal growth that eventually decomposes, using up the oxygen needed to support life in the Gulf.
Scientists anticipated a larger dead zone this year due to the heavy spring rains. “We expected one of the largest zones ever recorded because the Mississippi River discharge levels, and the May data indicated a high delivery of nutrients during this critical month which stimulates the mid-summer dead zone,” says Nancy Rabalais, a research professor at Louisiana State University, who led the survey mission.
The hypoxic zone or dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico forms every summer and is a result of excess nutrients from the Mississippi River and seasonal stratification (layering) of waters in the Gulf. According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, nutrients can come from many sources, including fertilizers from agriculture, golf courses and suburban lawns; erosion of soil full of nutrients; discharges from sewage treatment plants and deposition of atmospheric nitrogen.
Right before NOAA announces the size of this year’s dead zone was the largest since 1985, the environmental activists group deems companies- such as Tyson and Smithfield — as “responsible for the widespread manure and fertilizer pollution contaminating water from the Heartland to the Gulf of Mexico.” Using mapping technology and USGS data, Mighty Earth links the meat processors to the region of the United States with the highest levels of nitrate contamination...
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