La revue Viandes et produits carnés

La revue française de la recherche en viandes et produits carnés  ISSN  2555-8560




The French beef industry

The number of cows in the EU has decreased by 10% in the last 10 years, due to the continuous restructuring of the dairy herd (in the EU, about 2 cows in 3 are milked). EU beef production decreased at the same rate. French beef production has fared better over the long term, but it underwent a sharp decrease in the last 2 years. This drop has affected the profitability of both beef farmers and processors. In addition, French processors have also had to suffer from the “social dumping” used by their competitors in Germany, Poland or Ireland. However, positive signals from the market are starting to appear.

The French pork industry: its future faces the increased competitiveness of other European countries

France is the third largest producer of pork in the European Union. Its pig sector is strong thanks to its diversified and high quality charcuterie production. But in recent years it has encountered difficulties. Production and consumption are falling down. Imports remain consistent and, above all, the trade balance is becoming more and more negative, with foreign purchases of high value-added content. Despite good performance, farms cannot invest enough, which threatens the future. The packing industry, which has not been upgraded to the level of its main competitors, makes no profits. The meat processing industry profitability is attacked by the rising prices of the raw material. Competitiveness and innovative capacity of the pig industry have been substantially reduced.

Environmental footprint of meat and meat products

Animal products are at the heart of environmental issues of agriculture. Their global impacts on land use, biodiversity, water use and greenhouse gas emissions are singled out. The application of the Life Cycle Assessment for the environmental assessment of agricultural products and especially meat products has changed the perception of their environmental impacts, providing a broader view of the production system and a multi-criteria evaluation. While the impacts of livestock are better known, the assessment methods remain to be stabilized. A common approach and data bases for the entire meat product chain remain to be developed, to better assess the environmental consequences of the consumption of meat products.

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