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Eat less meat to save the planet

News Section Icon Published 02/09/2014

A new report from academics at Cambridge and Aberdeen universities, Importance of food-demand management for climate mitigation, looks at how we can address the unsustainable demand for meat and dairy products from the growing world population.

Our CEO, Philip Lymbery, said: “Much of the talk around meat is how we produce more to keep up with demand, which is growing worldwide. But we're building our house on sand.

“Ramping up meat production to satisfy demand is unsustainable. If we are to build our future food model on solid foundations then the question needs to be: how can we feed a growing world population? Not how do we produce more meat. In answering that question, we can achieve global food security and feed everyone without wrecking the planet in the process.”

The lead researcher of the study, Bojana Bajzelj from the University of Cambridge, reportedly said: "The average efficiency of livestock converting plant feed to meat is less than 3%, and as we eat more meat, more arable cultivation is turned over to producing feedstock for animals that provide meat for humans.”

The answer is to consume less meat and to waste less. Getting animals back on the land will reduce food waste as animals on grass can turn something we can’t eat into something we can. Animals waste the majority of grain’s calorific value when converting it to meat and dairy.  

Eat less but better higher welfare meat reared on pasture to reduce the environmental damage caused by meat production.

These arguments are set out in Philip Lymbery’s book, Farmageddon.


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