FACT CHECK: Does Kamala Harris Want To ‘Eliminate’ Beef?

Brad Sylvester | Fact Check Editor

A post shared on Facebook claims California Sen. Kamala Harris “wants to eliminate” beef.

Verdict: False

While Harris has called for the government to change dietary guidelines to reduce the consumption of red meat, she has not called for the elimination of beef altogether.

Fact Check:

Former Vice President Joe Biden recently announced Harris as his 2020 running mate, sparking a renewed interest in her positions on various policy issues. This particular Facebook post claims Harris “wants to eliminate” beef. (RELATED: Was Kamala Harris The Alameda County District Attorney When Oscar Grant Was Killed?)

“Kamala Harris wants to eliminate this right here,” the post, which is accompanied by a photo of cooked beef, reads. “If you raise beef or eat beef, you can’t vote the democratic party this election. She has worked with Cory Booker on eliminating animal agriculture and is on record starting that meat is killing the planet. That shows her ignorance.”

While Harris did state that she supports changing dietary guidelines to reduce the consumption of red meat during a CNN climate change town hall last year, she does not appear to have called for banning it altogether. During the town hall, she suggested that Americans need to be “educated about the effect of our eating habits on our environment,” but also stated, “I love cheeseburgers from time to time.”

The Environmental Protection Agency states that the agricultural sector contributed about 10 percent of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions in 2018. Cattle and other livestock produce methane during their digestive processes, and those emissions account for over a quarter those produced by the agricultural sector, according to the agency. The management of livestock manure can also contribute to greenhouse gas emissions.

Harris has previously worked with Democratic New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker on agricultural issues. Last month, Booker introduced a bill, which Harris co-sponsors, that seeks to temporarily suspend current and future USDA waivers allowing meatpacking plants to increase production line speed during the pandemic. However, it doesn’t eliminate production at such facilities altogether.

Booker last year introduced the Farm System Reform Act, a bill that, among other things, proposes the phasing out of industrial-scale livestock farms by 2040, according to Politico. Harris is not listed as a co-sponsor of the bill.

Harris’ office did not return a request for comment.

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Brad Sylvester

Fact Check Editor
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