Sustainable Agriculture

Sustainable Agriculture

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Sustainable Agriculture in its many dimensions—from the environmental impacts of food production, to the exploitation workers who produce it, to the quality and nutrition of the food produced—is of central importance to promoting the common good.  Tri-State CRI works at all levels of the food system to promote social and environmental sustainability, addressing antibiotics in meat production, GMOs, ethical recruitment of workers, deforestation resulting from crop production, nutrition, and food waste.

GMOS- Coalition members address food and seed companies with their concerns about the environmental and health risks related to Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) and the use of patent claims by the industry to restrict the freedom and self-reliance of farmers. The companies we address include Archer Daniels Midland, Dow, and Dupont. Our efforts have focused on the adoption of GMO food product labeling by major producers and marketers; the promotion of independent scientific analysis of GMO crops and a commitment to a long-term, comprehensive GMO testing program; the protection of farmers and indigenous peoples by ensuring that GMOs are not used to increase concentration of economic power in the world’s food system; the use of toxic pesticides in conjunction with specially created GMO crops. Such efforts have increased scrutiny of Dow’s Enlist product and led Campbell’s to voluntarily label its GMO products.

Antibiotics in Meat Production- Tri-State CRI has also participated in a long-standing dialogue with Hormel, addressing the issue of antibiotic use in meat production. Hormel has now acquired an antibiotic free line of pork, Applegate Farms, and is undertaking pilot studies on how to reduce antibiotic use for its pork and turkey production.

Supply Chain Deforestation and Modern Slavery – Supply chains for seafood and commodities such as soybeans, palm oil, and beef are known to be hotbeds of modern-day slavery, and Tri-State CRI’s work with ADM and Darden focuses on addressing these risks.  Tri-State CRI’s advocacy led ADM to adopt a Human Rights Policy in 2014, including specific reference to ethically recruiting workers throughout its supply chain, and Tri-State CRI has monitored the implementation of this policy since that time.  Work with ADM has also focused on deforestation in its soybean and palm oil supply chains, and ADM has worked to establish “traceability” in these supply chains to identify and eliminate deforestation. Tri-State CRI will be expanding its work on supply chain deforestation with a focus on cattle products, such as leather.

Resources:

USDA: Sustainable Agriculture Definitions and Terms
National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition
Ceres: Feeding Ourselves Thirsty Report
Field to Market
Stranded Assets In Agriculture Report
UN Global Compact: Sustainable Agriculture Portal
Food and Water Watch Report Genetically Engineered Food: Human Health Risks
NRDC: Going Mainstream: Meat and Poultry Raised Without Routine Antibiotics Use

Deforestation

Greenpeace Report: Slaughtering the Amazon
Solutions to Deforestation
A Path Toward Zero Deforestation Cattle
UCS: Drivers of Deforestation