JBS recommits to Cattle Agreement in the Amazon

by Jess Miller

December 20, 2012

[caption id="attachment_14278" align="aligncenter" width="600" caption="According to the Brazilian government, 62% of deforested areas become grasslands to feed cattle."][/caption] This week, Brazilian cattle giant JBS is recommitting to its promises made in the Cattle Agreement of 2009 to help fight Amazon destruction. JBS has finally published anaudit of its supply systemsand a work plan to ensure it delivers on the outstanding commitments within the Cattle Agreement. The work plan reaffirms the objectives of theCattle Agreement, outlining methodology, dates and the publication of annual audits. JBS has made the workplan available ontheir site. Cattle ranching is currently the main driver of deforestation in the Amazon. According to the Brazilian government, 62% of deforested areas become grasslands to feed cattle. Due to the fact JBS is the world's largest animal protein company, its responsibility and ability to impact the market and tackle deforestation as a whole is significant. That is why JBS announcement this week is so important and probably unthinkable for anyone following the progress of the Cattle Agreement. Just a few months ago, Greenpeace International published a report, alleging flaws in JBS control systems. In response to those allegations, JBS initiated a lawsuit against Greenpeace Brazil. Since then, however, dialogue has resumed, next steps agreed and the legal action launched against Greenpeace Brazil withdrawn all as part of an effort for theslaughterhouse to re-engage and fulfill its commitments as part of the Cattle Agreement. This is good news for the forests of Brazil. It shows the cattle companies in Brazil that customersand the global public wont accept products linked to Amazon destruction. Well continue to amplify those voices, as we monitor the actions taken by slaughterhouses in Brazil. The Amazon rainforest needs azero deforestation policyacross the cattle sector, not just on paper, but on the ground and in the forests. Today, it seems we are one step closer.

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