Dale E. Bauman, professor of nutritional biochemistry at Cornell University, will speak at Clemson University Sept. 18 about reducing the environmental impact of dairy farming. Bauman advocates use of recombinant bovine somatatropin, or rBST.

Not everyone agrees. The hormone is outlawed in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Japan and the 27 European Union nations. A number of U.S. businesses, including Starbucks and Publix, avoid rBST dairy products.

The seminar will be at 2 p.m. Sept. 18 in the Strom Thurmond Auditorium. The public is welcome.

Recombinant bovine somatotropin — rBST — is a synthetic version of a hormone cows make naturally. Two decades of research, including U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval in 1993, have shown rBST to be safe for human consumption. The controversy sets science at odds with public opinion, which is increasingly concerned about food safety.

At a time when the dairy industry is forcing farmers to stop using the product in their herds, Bauman notes that the “use of rBST markedly improves the efficiency of milk production, mitigates environmental impact, including greenhouse gas emissions, and reduces natural resource requirements such as fossil fuel, water and land use."

Source: eXtension.org