December 4, 2015
IFIF committed to reduce greenhouse impact of livestock productions
The International Feed Industry Federation (IFIF) is working with international members on a number of strategic initiatives to determine and reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from livestock production, the organisation said.
IFIF will also cooperate with international organizations, agri-food chain partners, and other key stakeholders as well.
As world leaders seek agreement at the UN conference on Climate Change (COP21/CMP11) in Paris, France, IFIF will continue to collaborate with stakeholders on the agri-food chain, in order to strengthen sustainable food production and help contribute to dietary quality and nutrient adequacy around the world.
According to IFIF, livestock raising and the consumption of animal products make a crucial contribution to the economic and nutritional wellbeing of the world's populations, particularly in developing countries.
The need to improve the environmental performance of the livestock sector will be ongoing as the UN FAO estimates that demand for livestock products will further increase over the coming decades.
The global feed industry has a longstanding commitment to improve feed efficiency by reducing the feed conversion rates for all major livestock and farmed fish species, IFIF said.
Furthermore, the industry continues to develop better animal nutrition to avoid carbon or nitrogen losses into the atmosphere or water, through better use of forages, and feed additives as well as diversifying protein sources such as canola meal and sunflower meal in feed rations, or legumes in pastures for ruminants.
Crucially, the feed industry also contributes value to the rising volume of food industry co- products, further increasing the sustainability of livestock production, IFIF added.
To support sustainability efforts at an international level, the Global Feed LCA Institute (GFLI) - which IFIF is a founding member of - will use the FAO-supported LEAP methodology to develop a premium global standard for assessing and benchmarking feed industry impact and improvement in LCA calculation at regional level, in order to help reduce the environmental footprint of livestock products.
Together with the EU Association of Specialty Feed Ingredients and their Mixtures (FEFANA), and a consortium of international organisations, IFIF had launched the Specialty Feed Ingredients Sustainability Project (SFIS), which measured and established the positive role of specialty feed ingredients (SFIs) on the environmental impact of livestock production.
Moreover, IFIF provides expert input to multi-stakeholder FAO-led sustainability initiatives, including the Global Agenda for Sustainable Livestock and the Partnership on Livestock Environmental Assessment and Performance (LEAP).
Alexandra de Athayde, IFIF's executive director, explains that, "through innovation and efficiency, animal feed has proven to be an essential part of the solution to make the livestock production chain more sustainable and reduce GHG emissions."
"Given the diversity of livestock production systems around the world, it is important to find solutions that work locally, while ensuring food safety and quality from farm to fork," de Athayde added. "IFIF will continue to champion science-based decisions, the need for continued innovation and better technologies, as well as regulatory convergence, and free and fair trade as a basis for sustainable production in the future."