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National Institute for Animal Agriculture launches sustainability council

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Council to explore, discuss, learn, and develop knowledge that ensures the viability and acceptance of animal agriculture.

The National Institute for Animal Agriculture (NIAA) has launched a new sustainability council to empower NIAA members, partners, and industry experts to explore, discuss, learn, and develop knowledge that ensures the viability and acceptance of animal agriculture in today’s food system. The council will host the inaugural webinar on April 14, 2022.

“The question is no longer why the sustainability agenda holds strategic relevance or what action must be taken in order to achieve it, but rather how to do so,” said Fabian Bernal M.S, P.A.S., global head of sustainability for DeLaval Group. Bernal and Angela Baysinger DVM, North American animal welfare lead for the Veterinary and Consumer Affairs team of Merck Animal Health will co-chair the council. The new council replaces the Animal Care Council and the Food Security, Regulatory & Trade Council and the Sustainability Council will work to address topics such as environmental stewardship, animal welfare, food security and more.

Animal agriculture leaders within today’s food system have always considered sustainability vitally important to the success of the industry. However, conversations on the topic have greatly expanded and escalated outside of the animal agriculture sector within recent years. Like many topics, food system sustainability has evolved from a conversation of theory and policy to one of practice and application. Additionally, consumer and corporate definitions of sustainability have expanded to now include environmental stewardship, social responsibility, and economic viability. Animal agriculture topics of interest related to social responsibility include animal welfare, food security, labor and human rights, and more.

Agriculture professionals interested in the new sustainability council may meet our co-chairs and learn about their vision through this video and may join the inaugural sustainability council webinar. The April 14 webinar will feature a conversation between co-chairs and Tara Vander Dussen - The New Mexico Milk Maid, Jack Britt - food futurist, scientist, and agricultural systems consultant and Lara Moody - executive director of IFEEDER. The sustainability conversation will continue the following week at NIAA’s Annual Conference.


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