Delegates to the world's first meat congress in Argentina have called for the elimination of perfectionist policies which are hampering the development of the world meat trade.
Delegates to the world's first meat congress in Argentina have called for the elimination of perfectionist policies which are hampering the development of the world meat trade. They are urging governments and international bodies to draw up legislation on an eight-point series of measures.
SYNOPSIS: The congress itinerary included a visit to an Argentine Meat Board packing house in Buenos Aires. Argentina is primarily an agricultural country and its prosperity depends largely on foreign trade in meat. Its industry revolves largely around meat-processing, meat-packing and other animal by-products.
Until recently, the Argentine meat industry had suffered for several years as domestic prices were held to an unprofitable minimum by the former Peron regime. But it's in places like Argentina that some of the congress delegates believe the future meat production for the entire world lies.
Members of the Organisation of American States delegation said Latin America and Australia may soon became the major meat suppliers. They say the immense cattle pastures of Australia and South and Central America would, in the coming decades, graze enough cattle to meet most of the world's needs. But reports from Australia earlier this year show beef farmers to be facing bankruptcy and ruin. They attributed the situation to a severe drought and shrinking world markets, among other factors.
Back at the conference table, delegates worked out a proposal to try and solve the problems countries like Australia, face. The final document produced eight measures, they included long term export and import agreements, bans on dumping of excess production and international consultation to resolve market imbalances, without harming the interest of exporting countries. Numerous countries and organisations throughout the world have placed various bans on meat imports to protect their own interests.
Delegates also suggested that the developed nations should stop feeding their cattle expensive grain and that they should concentrate on raising cattle in countries with ample natural pastures. The congress was told that 1,000 million people use as much grain to feed cattle as another 2,000 million used to feed themselves in low income countries.