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On March 19, Red Deer County hosted local producers and industry experts for workshop on certified sustainable beef.The workshop was in conjunction with Verified Beef Production and discussed the tools, protocols and procedures that are required by producers to call their beef “Certified Sustainable.” Speakers presented from BIXS herd management software, Cargill and McDonalds Canada on various facets of sustainable beef.The rationale for the workshop (and for certified sustainable beef in general) is in response to increased demand from consumers who want to know what is in their meat and how the animals are being raised. According to Jeff Fitzpatrick of McDonalds Canada, “McDonalds has a 20/20 vision for sustainable beef. We are committed to sharing as much information as possible on how our food is produced.”Although beef producers having been raising quality food for generations, there are major advantages to being certified sustainable. This includes greater access to markets by a beef industry committed to high standards that the public can feel confident about when they purchase Canadian beef.There are currently approximately 900 beef producers in Red Deer County.