Student Fights Against On-Campus Slaughterhouse

Colorado State University student Austin Joseph rejects plan for JBS—the world’s largest meat producer—to set up slaughterhouse at the school’s Fort Collins campus


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Colorado State University is planning to open the JBS Global Food Innovation Center (a slaughterhouse) on its Fort Collins campus. The world’s largest meat producer JBS—which was recently implicated in a meat scandal in Brazil—donated $12.5 million to fund the project. “We do not currently have a space on- or off-campus for students to learn these processes first-hand,” CSU’s Department of Animal Sciences head Kevin Pond said. “For educational purposes, the full range of animal handling and processing will take place in the facility.” Nutrition and Food Science major Austin Joseph wrote a letter of concern published by student newspaper The Rocky Mountain Collegian stating that building the slaughterhouse would be akin to buying a horse and buggy immediately before the release of the Model T. “If CSU truly has agriculture students’ best interests at heart, the school should invest in teaching and researching cellular agriculture, not production methods that will soon be obsolete,” Joseph writes. “Why should CSU prepare students for careers in a dying field when it could train those same students to become pioneers capable of changing the world?” Earlier this year, the University California, Berkeley—in partnership with food advocacy firm Good Food Institute—introduced two new courses to its curriculum that challenge students to create the next big products (such as vegan meat and seafood alternatives) in the plant-based food industry.