5 Ways Cattle Are Actually Good For the Enviroment

By Alycia McClure on April 22, 2015

So it’s earth day, and instead of going out and hugging some trees what do you say we take a few minutes to discuss the original green machine – the cow. By now I am sure you have heard many claims regarding cattle they aren’t sustainable, they’re ruining our water system, the most popular of them being that raising them is bad for the environment. Not only are these false statements, they are exactly the opposite of the truth. Follow along as we explain why cows are the original greenies.

1. Cattle combat global warming by restoring carbon to the soil. Through the methane in their waste products, cattle are our best resource in returning ground to it’s natural state.

2. Cattle can graze where farming is impossible making great use of previously what would be considered waste land. 85% of land in the U.S. that is grazed by cattle, cannot be used for farming.

3. When cattle eat grass they stimulate new growth and while they walk and fertilize on the ground it promotes seed germination. This prevents the overpopulation of woody shrubs and keeps our grassland ecosystems healthy and stable.

4. It only takes 441 gallons of water to produce a pound of beef, this is slightly more than what it takes to produce a pound of rice and much higher nutritive quality. – University of California at Davis

5. Cattlemen used 33 percent less land, 12 percent less water, 19 percent less feed and 9 percent less fossil fuel energy in 2007 to produce the same amount of beef as they did in 1977. How? Mainly by getting more meat out of fewer cows. – Jude Caper PH.D.

Sustainable beef is not what some seem to refer to as a four letter word, as Jude Caper puts, “Sustainability is turning sunshine into steak.” Any feeding environment can be sustainable, from grass fed to grain fed, to organic. As cattleman it is our duty and our passion to provide food that not only keeps us within a stable environment but is also nutritious and slap your momma delicious!

Resources used in curation of this post:

http://www.explorebeef.org/cmdocs/explorebeef/factsheet_theenvironment.pdf

https://wsu.academia.edu/JudeCapper

http://www.wsj.com/articles/actually-raising-beef-is-good-for-the-planet-1419030738

http://www.explorebeef.org/protectingresources.aspx

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