August 15, 2004
August, 2004 - "The World Meat Industry at a Crossroads" was the theme of the recent 15th World Meat Congress, and it fairly well describes the type of global concerns expressed at the international meeting held June 14-17, 2004, in Winnipeg, Manitoba.
More than 600 participants focused on the evolution of the meat sector from its production-driven, domestically focused and nationally regulated beginnings to the current global status within a market-driven economy striving toward increasingly free international trade.
Dialog addressing issues relating to food security, quality assurance, guarantees of origin, crisis management and consumer confidence were key elements of the four-day event.
American Sheep Industry Association Executive Director Peter Orwick participated in the Sheepmeat Committee Meetings by discussing the research and development initiatives of the U.S. sheep industry as well as reviewing the promotional activities of the American Lamb Board.
"Sheep inventories have contracted worldwide," stated Orwick. "But on the positive side, lamb-meat prices have generally strengthened for producers."
Representatives of meat and livestock industries from around the world gather at the International Meat Secretariat every two years to analyze trends, review international issues and discuss the state of the industry.