Giving up meat is not the way to protect the environment. Ipsos Global Advisor conducted an international survey. The research shows that two-thirds of the population is concerned about climate change and is committed to protecting the environment. But they do not consider the plant-based alternative to meat to be the most environmentally friendly. The survey comes at the same time as a discussion involving leading scientists, who say that meat consumption should not be reduced at all, but only redistributed. In those areas of the world where little meat is consumed, it should be increased, in the others, it should be slightly reduced.
So: no need to give up meat
Two thirds of the world’s population are concerned about climate change. But only a minority think that replacing meat with a plant-based alternative is a solution. Ipsos Global Advisor conducted the research between February 18 and March 4, interviewing 24,000 people in 31 countries. 68% said they were concerned about the climate in their country, but only 44% believed that eating less meat or replacing it with plant-based alternatives would help solve the problem.
There are differences between countries. 64% of Peruvians say they are likely to eat less meat, followed by Mexico (61%) and China (60%). At the other end of the scale, only 29% of Japanese and Canadians say the same, as do citizens of France, Poland and the United States (all 33%).
Reduce meat? No, redistribute it
Meanwhile, the debate among international experts continues. According to a study by the University of Bonn (Germany), the positive effects of meat consumption depend on the amount consumed and the region of the world you are in. Researchers argue that an overall positive contribution, in all respects, would not come from reducing the total amount of meat consumed worldwide. But from the redistribution of that consumption. In some areas, increased consumption would bring at least two important benefits.
“If grassland serves no other purpose, it makes perfect sense to use it as pasture for cattle,” explains Dr Martin Parlasca, as foodnavigator.com reports. There is no point in imposing a vegetarian diet on the entire planet. “In the poorest regions of the world, plant sources of high-quality protein and micronutrients are scarce. Here, meat consumption helps to reduce deficiencies,” Parlasca continues. In these cases, animals are often a key element of a healthy diet. For many people, they are also an important source of income.