Meat & Livestock News

Calls to Limit “Climate-Friendly” Meat Labelling Gain Support

A leading animal rights group has joined the Environmental Working Group (EWG) in urging restrictions on the use of “climate-friendly” labels on meat products. This move aligns with proposals currently being reviewed by the USDA, aiming to regulate such claims more strictly.

The Animal Legal Defense Fund (ALDF) has formally requested the USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) to either ban the term “climate-friendly” on beef labels or mandate independent third-party verification for these claims.

Furthermore, ALDF suggests that products making such claims should also feature a numerical carbon disclosure rating to provide consumers with clear, quantifiable information regarding the product’s environmental impact.

Highlighting beef production as a significant source of greenhouse gases, ALDF argues that labelling beef as “climate-friendly” lacks credible evidence, even with a 10% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. The organisation points to the FSIS’s recent approval of a “climate-friendly” label for “Brazen Beef” as a contentious decision, previously challenged by the EWG.

ALDF emphasises that using “climate-friendly” terminology without clear, verifiable data could mislead consumers about the environmental cost of conventional beef production. The group advocates for a transparent and verified carbon rating system to accompany any future claims of meat being “climate-friendly,” ensuring consumers are fully informed about the products they choose.