Taking the steps toward sustainable livestock: our multidisciplinary global farm platform journey

Rivero, M.J., Evans, A.C.O., Berndt, A., Cartmill, A., Dowsey, A., Farruggia, A., Mignolet, C., Enriquez-Hidalgo, D., Chadwick, D., McCracken, D., Busch, D., Pereyra, F., Martin, G.B., Sanford, G.R., Sheridan, H., Wright, I., Brunet, L., Eisler, M.C., Lopez-Villalobos, N., Rovira, P., Harris, P., Murphy, P., Williams, A.P., Jackson, R.W., Machado, R., Suraj, P.T., Puech, T., Boland, T.M., Ayala, W. and Lee, M.R.F. (2021) Taking the steps toward sustainable livestock: our multidisciplinary global farm platform journey. Animal Frontiers, 11 (5). pp. 52-58.

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Ruminant livestock are a vital global source of high-quality protein and bioavailable minerals and vitamins. They support healthy dietary choices by providing milk and meat produced from less productive land and food industry byproducts. However, despite the contribution of ruminants to food systems and the circular bioeconomy, ruminant production systems are increasingly questioned due to their environmental impact, particularly their significant contribution to greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and associated global warming. There is a need, therefore, to identify a pathway to sustainable global ruminant production. In 2014, our group defined eight strategies or “steps” (Eisler et al., 2014), to mitigate the environmental impacts of ruminant production while optimizing the quantity and quality of the food they produce. To realize these goals, we established the “Global Farm Platform” initiative (www.globalfarmplatform.org), a network of “farm platforms” or research farms (RFs), to explore multidisciplinary strategies and evaluate different production systems around the globe (Table 1). Here, we provide a perspective on our approach and the steps we are taking to realize the ambition of supporting sustainable ruminant livestock production as a part of future food systems contributing to both human and planetary health.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: circularity, grazing systems, mixed farming, precision farming, research farms, ruminant livestock
Divisions: Agriculture and Environment (from 1.08.20)
Depositing User: Mrs Rachael Giles
Date Deposited: 28 Oct 2021 11:07
Last Modified: 28 Oct 2021 11:07
URI: https://hau.repository.guildhe.ac.uk/id/eprint/17760

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