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Social Sustainability Assessment in Livestock Production: A Social Life Cycle Assessment Approach

1
Instituto de Ingenieria, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Ciudad de Mexico 04510, Mexico
2
Facultad de Medicina Veterinaria y Zootecnia, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, Ciudad de Mexico 04510, Mexico
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2019, 11(16), 4419; https://doi.org/10.3390/su11164419
Received: 15 May 2019 / Revised: 9 August 2019 / Accepted: 11 August 2019 / Published: 15 August 2019
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Agriculture, Food and Wildlife)
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Abstract

This study evaluates the social performance of monoculture (MC), intensive silvopastoral (ISP), and native silvopastoral (NSP) livestock production systems in the tropical region of southeastern Mexico through a social life cycle assessment (SCLA) approach. The methodological framework proposed by the United Nations Environmental Program/Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (UNEP/SETAC) (2009) was employed based on a scoring approach with a performance scale ranging from 1 (very poor) to 4 (outstanding). Twelve livestock ranches for calf production were evaluated using 18 impact subcategories associated with the categories “human rights”, “working conditions”, “health and safety”, “socioeconomic repercussions”, and “governance”. The stakeholders evaluated were workers, the local community, society, and value chain actors. The ranches had performance scores between 1.78 (very poor) and 2.17 (poor). The overall average performance of the ranches by production system was 1.98, 1.96, and 1.97 for the MC, ISP, and NSP systems, respectively. The statistical analysis shows that there is no significant difference in the social performance of the livestock production systems. This assessment indicates that the cattle ranches analyzed in Mexico have poor or very poor social performance. The results show that socioeconomic and political contexts exert a greater influence on the social performance of livestock production systems than does their type of technology. View Full-Text
Keywords: social sustainability; livestock production systems; social life cycle assessment; tropical livestock; monoculture; silvopastoral social sustainability; livestock production systems; social life cycle assessment; tropical livestock; monoculture; silvopastoral
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited (CC BY 4.0).

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Rivera-Huerta, A.; Rubio Lozano, M.S.; Padilla-Rivera, A.; Güereca, L.P. Social Sustainability Assessment in Livestock Production: A Social Life Cycle Assessment Approach. Sustainability 2019, 11, 4419.

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