Producing Canadian Beef in a sustainable, responsible way stores carbon, promotes biodiversity, preserves natural habitats, supports care for animals and communities, and embraces innovations that drive continual improvement.
Look for the mark of beef sustainability*
at these participating retailers,
restaurants, and distributors supporting beef production in Canada.
*CRSB Certified (the Certified Sustainable Beef Framework) is a voluntary 3rd party audited certification system that recognizes sustainability in Canadian beef production and processing against standards aligned with the five principles of beef sustainability (see below).
From ranches to restaurants, here’s why beef sustainability matters to our partners and why it should matter to all Canadians.
What is sustainable beef?
A socially responsible, economically viable and environmentally sound product that prioritizes the Planet, People, Animals and Progress.
Five-core guiding principles support this definition.
People & the community
Animal health & welfare
Efficiency & innovation
In Canada, the Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef (CRSB) works with partners across the beef supply chain to recognize and advance the environmental, social and economic sustainability of Canadian beef.
Get the Cattle Facts
What is sustainable beef?
It's a way of life.
Want to learn more about how Canadian beef helps support a healthy planet?
Read further about some commonly asked questions. If you don’t see what you are looking for here, contact us.
Sustainable beef is defined as a socially responsible, environmentally sound and economically viable product that prioritizes the planet, people, animals and progress. This means that farmers and ranchers, processors and everyone in the supply chain who is involved in bringing beef to your table are dedicated to conserving the land, water & air, raising animals responsibly, caring for our families and communities, and embracing technology and innovation grounded in science to make improvements.
The Canadian Roundtable for Sustainable Beef completed a National Beef Sustainability Assessment that measured the sustainability performance of Canadian beef . For example, we know that the greenhouse gas footprint of Canadian beef production is less than half of the global average, that beef production stores 1.5 billion tonnes of carbon in Canadian soil, and helps provide two-thirds of the wildlife habitat on only one-third of Canada’s agricultural land. Learn more on our Benchmarks page.
The report also identified key areas through which a strategy has been set to make improvements in the sustainability of Canadian beef. A series of 2030 Goals for the beef industry have also been established
across seven diverse areas of focus.
Because you care! By purchasing CRSB Certified beef, you send the message that you are supporting sustainable beef production, continuous improvement and all the people involved in bringing it to your table.
There are several companies now sourcing beef sourced from beef operations certified to CRSB standards. Find out where.
It’s simple. To survive and thrive, grasslands need grazing animals. Canadian rangelands are home to over 1,000 plants, animal and insects. Grazing cattle on landscapes like the prairies duplicate what the bison did on the same land for hundreds and thousands of years.
Functions of these landscapes include wildlife habitat, carbon sequestration, and utilization of land that is unsuitable for other food production. Preserving them is key to conserving habitat for those species, and grazing cattle raised by Canadian ranchers is part of the solution.
Cattle are a natural part of the biogenic carbon cycle, their unique digestive system, with 4 stomachs, uses a combination of microorganisms to break down plant material. Cattle emit methane (CH4 ) as a by-product of digestion, which then enters the atmosphere. As methane is a short-lived gas, after 10-12 years it breaks down into CO2 and is utilized by plants during photosynthesis, a vital process for plant health. Carbon is then stored by the plants in their leaves, stem and roots, until a grazer comes along, like cattle, consumes the carbon, and starts the cycle over again. This carbon storage helps preserve over 1.5 billion tonnes of carbon with the help of grazing beef cattle.
Due to the short-lived nature of methane, and a sustainable beef production system like we have in Canada, the amount of methane emitted is lower than that being broken down, meaning methane from beef cattle is destroyed at a rate faster than it is being produced.
Source Canadian Cattle Association: The Biogenic Carbon Cycle and Cattle | CLEAR Center (ucdavis.edu)
Sustainable practices are about how the cattle are raised, rather than specific product attributes like these. Production practices differ across the many diverse landscapes and farm operations in Canada and there are benefits and challenges with each. The CRSB aims to recognize good production practices and make improvements across all types of production systems.
Looking for more?
Check out the links below that help tell the full story of sustainable beef in Canada and around the globe.