LeadersPrivate: Karsten Maier
Burping cows are causing climate change.
Okay, that’s a slight exaggeration… but there’s some truth to it. Methane emissions from livestock (as well as associated land clearance and fertiliser use), contribute more to global warming than all the cars, trucks, trains, planes, and ships in the world combined.
Too much meat is also bad for our health. People in rich countries already eat much more than is healthy for them (and people in developing countries are catching up), pushing up rates of obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and certain cancers. The average family in the UK, for example, would have to cut meat consumption by half just to get to healthy levels.
What do our readers think?
We had a question sent in from Tony, asking whether Europeans should be encouraged to eat less meat.
Next, we had a comment from Bódis: “I would really prefer to focus consumption on local / regional and seasonal produce instead of telling [people] to eat less meat.”
Nando considers eating meat to be a central part of European food culture. Given that meat is so important to our diets and way of life, he wondered how Europeans can be encouraged to eat more sustainably.
Lastly, reader Boyko feared to fall victim to yet “another regulation, like the ones on the straight bananas and cucumbers”, arguing whether or not he eats meat would be exclusively his personal choise.
To get a response, we put these comments to Karsten Maier, Secretary General of the European Livestock and Meat Trades Union. You can see his response in the video at the top of this post.
Should we all eat less meat?
Would a ‘meat tax’ encourage people to eat more sustainably?
Check out our debate on veganism here for another point of view!
IMAGE CREDITS: CC / Flickr – Rogerio Bromfman
Funded by the European Union. Views and opinions expressed are however those of the author(s) only and do not necessarily reflect those of the European Union or the European Commission. Neither the European Union nor the granting authority can be held responsible for them.