For Colorado’s ranching families, the land is not just where they raise cattle; it's also where they raise their families. They have a personal stake in the quality of their environment - so they are always looking for new ways to improve the air, water and land on and near their property.
In fact, today’s cattlemen are significantly more environmentally sustainable than they were 30 years ago. A study by Washington State University in 2007 found that today’s farmers and ranchers raise 13% more beef from 30% fewer cattle. When compared with beef production in 1977, each pound of beef produced today:
Produces 16% less carbon emissions
Takes 33% less land
Requires 12% less water
Coloradoans rely on farming and ranching families to manage and maintain almost half of the 63 million acres in Colorado. A healthy aspect of sustainable beef production involves grazing cattle on U.S. rangelands, about 85 percent of which are unsuitable for crops. Raising cattle on this land contributes to the ecosystems by converting forages humans cannot eat into a nutrient-rich food humans can eat -- beef.
COLORADO’S RESOURCE STEWARDSHIP CODE OF ETHICS
The Colorado cattle industry has a Code of Ethics that is followed. It recognizes that productive range resources are vital to the well-being of individual ranchers, local, state, and national economies; and society as a whole. It also affirms that through adaptive management practices, commitment, and a continual quest for knowledge; the proper stewardship of the nation’s resources will help sustain healthy communities and a healthy environment.
Statement of Belief
The Knowledge Base of the Industry Must be Better Utilized and Enhanced. Responsible resource stewards: