A few days ago, the American Meat Institute (AMI) unveiled a new website, www.sustainablemeatindustry.org at the Worldwide Food Expo in Chicago. If you get your meat information from mainstream media, you may have read about AMI in The New York Times or saw its representatives on Larry King Live. The AMI occasionally posts great videos to YouTube about varying meat topics including the safety of nitrites in cured meats, preventing cross-contamination in the home, among others.
Frequently I read about various “sustainable agricultural practices,” all varied in their use of the term “sustainable.” For example, there are individuals who may use the term “organic” synonymously with “sustainable,” yet there are others who relate improved production efficiencies due to biotechnology as a “more sustainable” approach to agriculture. This dichotomous approach to using the term “sustainable” makes the overall concept of sustainability very unclear.
Often, the meat industry is labeled as “unsustainable,” which is troubling because its root term (um, sustainable) is so poorly defined. For some differing views as to what is sustainability in the meat business, check out www.sustainablemeatindustry.org.