Reading Time: 2 minutes The summit is focussed on making the food system more sustainable Credit: Adobe. Do not use without permission.
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Meat industry figures are pushing the United Nations (UN) for support ahead of a summit this week, a major news outlet has confirmed thanks to a series of leaked documents.

The UN Food Systems Summit (UN FSS) commences today in New York. Here, discussions will take place on how to make the food system more sustainable.

Meat industry kickback

The summit is taking place to help reach Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. This year, it’s centered around a global pledge to develop a system for ‘people and the planet’.

However, the meat industry has other plans.

In leaked documents, The Guardian reports, industry bodies are threatening to withdraw from discussions unless a ‘common goal’ is agreed upon.

Animal agriculture figures claimed that ‘adances’ in intensive farming meant they’re able to ‘preserve’ planetary resources. Moreover, this also allowed them to deliver on nutrition too, the news outlet adds.

Some of the meat industry members even complained to the UN about the group containing environmental scientists and animal welfare NGOs.

They reportedly described them as wanting to ‘further an ideological anti-livestock stance’.

Those who signed the letter include the International Meat Secretariat, the International Poultry Council, and Global Dairy Platform. Further, the International Dairy Federation, the Global Roundtable for Sustainable Beef, the International Egg Commission, and the International Feed Industry Federation.

UN summit response

Among the documents published by the UN ahead of the FSS includes an outline of ‘sustainable livestock’.

It notes that animal agriculture has created an ‘unprecedented challenge’.

This comes as, in 2018 alone, there were a staggering almost 40 million farmed land animals on the planet. 

‘…Many methods and scale of livestock production systems around the world present severe tests to stay within the safe operating zone of planetary boundaries’, the issue states.

A ‘rebalancing’ of meat consumption was also suggested.

Emily is a News and Features Writer for Plant Based News. She has previously worked as a journalist in Devon, UK, reporting on local issues from politics to the environment.