Member countries of FAO in Latin America and the Caribbean signed an agreement to promote the transition toward sustainable livestock farming. Andrés González, Sustainable Livestock, Animal Health, and Biodiversity Officer, FAO, explained that the agreement aims to increase regional livestock production and reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the sector.
“Our region is destined to become the next global food producer. We need to adopt practices that contribute to sustainable, resilient and competitive livestock farming to demonstrate that this sector is part of the solution," said González.
The agreement was reached during the 16th meeting of the Livestock Development Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (CODEGALAC), held from July 11 to 13, 2023 in Quito, Ecuador.
In Mexico the livestock sector contributes 39.7% of the primary sector GDP. In Latin America and the Caribbean, value chains associated with livestock production are linked to the livelihoods of small-scale producers, promoting food security, nutrition, employment and other positive effects for local and regional economies. Victor Villalobos, Minister, SADER highlighted that in Mexico, the livestock sector is an important job source and an essential ally to fight malnutrition.
Since 2020, FAO has supported over 30 projects related to sustainable livestock practices in Latin America and the Caribbean. These projects aim to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions per kilogram of meat produced while simultaneously increasing productivity levels. For example, in Uruguay, the "Livestock and Climate" project has helped to reduce GHG by 18% per kilogram of meat produced. Additionally, they achieved an 8% increase in beef production and a 17% increase in sheep meat production.
At the national scale, during the celebration of National Livestock Day on March 6, 2023, the National Confederation of Livestock Organizations (CNOG), the Mexican Association of Meat Producers (AMEG) and UNAM signed an agreement aimed at increasing productivity and competitiveness, as well as enhancing traceability and sustainability through research and the improvement of productive chains.