April 22 will mark the 40th anniversary of Earth Day and once again, the beef checkoff's issues management and producer communications teams are helping cattle farmers and ranchers across the country share their environmental sustainability message with consumers. This year's Earth Day campaign highlights the tradition and longevity of cattlemen's environmental stewardship practices and reinforces cattlemen's geographic diversity yet unity around being "green" with the resources in their area.
Robert Fountain, Jr., cattle producer from Adrian, Ga., and secretary/treasurer for the Cattlemen's Beef Board, knows first-hand the importance of being a good steward of the land.
"Well, we planted a lot of the trees in not only reforested land where timber had been cut, but also some of the marginal land that was more susceptible to erosion," Fountain said. "Then most of the open fields that were the best soils and the most conducive to growing good grass, good forages, was left in open land. And, incorporated terracing and there's a couple of lakes on the farm that conserve water for usage with the cattle. And, have the cattle fenced out of the streams so they don't go into the streams that criss-cross the farm or the borders so that improves the water quality by keeping the livestock out of the streams themselves."
Everyone who plays a role in the beef industry has a story worth sharing. Fountain says he hopes his "everyday environmentalist" approach helps enable future generations to enjoy the land, just as he and his family have done for more than 100 years.
Throughout the coming weeks, the checkoff will be providing tools for producers to use in order to promote Earth Day activities. Producers interested in getting involved on a local level in Earth Day activities should contact their state beef council.
For more information about the checkoff's Earth Day activities or other efforts being funded with your beef checkoff investment, visit www.MyBeefCheckoff.com.