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What's their beef?

August 10, 2020 8:56 AM
By Cllr Vilnis Vesma

I am 100% behind the idea that supermarkets and butchers should not stock meat from areas where deforestation has been used to create grazing land. I see that Tesco in particular has come under attack from Greenpeace on this score but I think the story is more complex and nuanced than the press headlines suggest. Tesco may be the wrong target as they have already stopped buying Brazilian beef (the most problematic source) and their two meat suppliers, Moy Park and Tulip, already meet the supermarket's zero deforestation standards.

The issue is that those two companies were recently bought out by a company called JBS, which has been linked with deforestation. In Greenpeace's view that makes Tesco fair game but in my view the sins of their owners should not be visited on Tulip and Moy Park. If Tesco says that Moy Park and Tulip have been audited against their zero-deforestation standard, that should be good enough unless someone can show that the audit process is flawed.