The Book Stall

Organic Meat Production and Processing


Organic Meat Production and Processing
edited by Steven C. Ricke, et al.
Wiley-Blackwell, 2012

As organic farming continues to emerge as a growth industry for both crops and meat, there is increasing demand for accurate and up-to-date information on producing, processing, marketing, and maintaining food safety in organic foods.
Organic Meat Production and Processing

This textbook compiled by a team of editors and an international collection of authors focuses on the management issues facing producers of organic beef, swine, poultry and other meat species. It also includes background articles on the history of organic operations, current market and regulatory issues, the differences between organic and conventional meats, and the future of the organic movement worldwide.




Better Meat?

Whether or not organic meat is actually more nutritious or safer than non-organic, the idea has cogency among consumers and is a principal driver for the organic market.

Authors of the paper on "Organic Meat Marketing" in this volume note that "there is no evidence that organic food is healthier or more nutritious. Consumers are often not aware that the organic standards are only based on the production and processing of the product and not on the final quality of the product."


They concede, however, that a majority of consumers have concerns about chemicals like hormones and herbicides in their food and try to avoid them as much as possible.

"These worries have increased because of the negative publicity about genetically modified (GM) crops, which are sold and fed to livestock, and... food scares such as bovine spongiform encephalopathy, foot and mouth disease, Salmonella, and Escherichia coli outbreaks."

Feeding the Organic Animal

Raising meat animals organically has to be done in cooperation with organic agronomy. That is, producers need sources of organic feed and supplements as local as possible.

"Formulating diets under one of the current policies for organic production while providing optimal performance of animals is a challenge," note the authors of "Organic Animal Nutrition and Feed Supplementations." "Ideally, 100% of the diets should be organic. However, due to difficulties faced by feed producers in diet optimization, the relatively high costs of organic feed ingredients, and their limited availability, there is potential to generate certain variations among the currently existing standards."






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