Spanish beef farming consumes 65% less water than the world average

In Spain A total of about 5,000 liters of water are used per kilo of meat. throughout the value chain. One third of the world average estimated by the FAO at about 15,000 liters per kilo. The same thing happens with the carbon footprint, which is up to 66% lower than the global average according to the report “Evaluation of the environmental impact of beef production chains that integrate grazing and landless systems.” This study, which has just been published in the magazine “Animal”, has been led by scientists from the Polytechnic University of Valencia such as Fernando Estellés, who highlights the need for its implementation: “Until now, the true impact of livestock farming was not known. of beef in our country.” According to Raisa Tinitana, another of the scientists in the study, this analysis “will allow laying the foundations to evaluate whether livestock farmers in Spain are making progress towards the climate neutrality goal proposed by the European Commission for 2050.”

Furthermore, the report points out, there are other notable aspects that have been little taken into account in the Spanish production system. One is the unaccounted carbon capture carried out by the pastures where the cows are. So, It is estimated that carbon sequestration can offset 60% of emissions of grazing animals, or the impact of eliminating cows on the planet, which could lead to other wild herbivores occupying their space, emitting greenhouse gases in a similar way to current ruminants, but without contributing to food of the planet. Another important aspect is that “92% of the food consumed by beef cattle in Spain does not compete with human food and the remaining 8%, mainly cereals such as barley or corn, do not put pressure on the increase in food prices,” according to the study.

Manuel Laínez, another of the scientists involved in the study, highlighted during the presentation of the conclusions one last aspect that explains these data: the efficiency of the production system used in beef cattle farming in Spain that “optimizes the use of available resources”.