THE International Feed Industry Federation (IFIF) recently announced that the "Global Feed Life Cycle Assessment" (LCA) guidelines — which were developed by the U.N. Food & Agriculture Organization (FAO)-led Livestock Environmental Assessment & Performance Partnership (LEAP) — are now available for public review.
IFIF, along with the American Feed Industry Assn. (AFIA) and the European Compound Feed Manufacturers' Federation (FEFAC) — is a founding member of LEAP, which aims to improve how environmental impacts of the livestock industry are measured and assessed in order to reduce them.
FEFAC and AFIA jointly developed feed LCA recommendations as part of their LEAP contributions, and these form a significant part of the LEAP draft guidelines. In fewer than two years, the LEAP partners were able to develop a methodology that will introduce a harmonized, science-based, practical and international approach to the assessment of the environmental performance of feed supply chains while taking into account the specificity of the diverse production systems that exist globally, an announcement said.
IFIF chairman Mario Cutait said, "The LEAP guidelines are the first feed-specific LCA guidelines that reflect a consensus among partners in the multi-stakeholder process, including FAO, national governments, private-sector organizations as well as (non-governmental organizations). IFIF welcomes these efforts, which represent an important step towards a globally harmonized industry standard for feed LCA."
"With global supply chains, it is important to rely on globally harmonized metrics," AFIA president and chief executive officer Joel G. Newman added. "The LEAP guidelines are a significant step forward to help feed companies develop consistent and credible environmental assessments and, therefore, to reduce the environmental footprint of livestock products."
FEFAC president Ruud Tijssens explained, "Common methodology for environmental footprinting is a pre-competitive issue and is part of our customers' expectations. The main recommendations of the 'Product Environmental Footprint Guide' developed by the European Commission were taken into account in the LEAP process," making the LEAP guidelines "the logical and relevant starting point to develop a standard aligned with the recommendations of the European Commission."
The public review period for the guidelines will close July 31. The draft feed LCA guidelines can be accessed on the LEAP website at www.fao.org/partnerships/leap/public-review/en.