Skip to Content

The Weekly News Source for Wyoming's Ranchers, Farmers and AgriBusiness Community

Progress report released on U.S. meat sector

by Wyoming Livestock Roundup

The North American Meat Institute (NAMI), the oldest and largest trade association representing U.S. packers and processors of beef, pork, lamb, veal and turkey, released the U.S. meat sector’s first-ever continuous improvement report. The report sets baselines for measuring progress towards ensuring the ag industry’s culture is transparent and data driven.  

Companies representing roughly 90 percent of meat sold in the U.S. participated in the data collection.

NAMI President and CEO Julie Anna Potts says, “As the saying goes, we cannot manage what we do not measure. It is an honor to share this first-ever dataset measuring the practices and commitments of America’s leading meat companies across the five focus areas of our comprehensive sustainability framework.”

Key findings

According to the report, about 81 percent of establishments are covered by a company’s commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and 82 percent are committed to minimizing packaging waste.

Eighty-three percent of reporting establishments initiated a water withdrawal program to record water use and minimize water use in certain areas, and 73 precent have a watershed-based risk assessment.

The report also states about 72 percent of reporting establishments handling live animals have a comprehensive animal welfare program, and 71 percent pass third-party animal handling audits annually at minimum.

As far as ensuring workspace safety, 100 percent of reporting establishments have a written worker safety program and safety-boarding in place and are continuing safety training.

The report also mentions statistics representing U.S. food safety. 

“Food safety is not a target; it is our culture,” the report states.

Ninety-eight percent of reporting establishments have a multidisciplinary team periodically reviewing food safety programs, 99 percent are covered by a company’s commitment to embedded food safety into the company culture and 99 percent conduct an accredited third-party food safety audit, at minimum annually.

NAMI strives to provide food security and encourages companies to donate to food banks and/or other charities.

According to the report, 78 percent of reporting companies make donations to food banks, and 71 percent make food security-related donations to other charities.

Future goals 

Announced in 2021, NAMI’s Protein For the People, Animals and Climate of Tomorrow (PACT) established a set of goals to meet by 2025 and 2030 to verify progress along the way. NAMI gears their Protein PACT goals towards animal welfare; labor and human rights; food safety; health and wellness; and the environment. 

According to the report, the goals “reflect the industry’s values and inspire members to continuously improve and increase consumer trust through the Protein PACT. The goals are aspirational, forward-looking and intended to encompass the entire supply chain.”

A few specific
goals include:

By 2025, 100 percent of NAMI members handling animals will pass third-party animal transport and handling audits. All members will require all suppliers to implement mandatory employee training and follow species-specific standards for animal care.

NAMI also will measure and help fill the protein gap to ensure families in need have enough high-quality protein by 2025. 

The NAMI, with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and Feeding America, will measure and help fill the protein gap by 2025 to ensure families in need have enough high-quality protein.

NAMI will further reduce workplace injuries by 50 percent, on top of the 75 percent reduction achieved from 1999 to 2019.

By 2030, 100 percent of NAMI members will have delivered an approved science-based target to reduce emissions in line with the Paris Climate Agreement goals, NAMI will reduce workplace injuries by 50 percent, on top of the 75 percent reduction achieved from 1999 to 2019 and every NAMI member will report on all metrics.

Kaitlyn Root is an editor for the Wyoming Livestock Roundup. Send comments on this article to

Back to top