The quickest, easiest and most impactful way to a climate-friendly food system is to reduce the amount of meat we eat.
Tim Lang, Professor of Food Policy, is an academic at the School of Arts and Social Sciences of City, University of London and an expert on Food Policy with 40 years experience in the industry. Here he talks to the lucky audience at the Foodprint Programme Launch in July 2019.
THE GLOBAL ISSUE
WHY MEAT MATTERS
MEATING DINER DEMAND
We are facing a climate crisis, which means if we don’t act on greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions now, with urgency across all sectors, the world in 2050 will be unlike anything we’ve ever known. Food is responsible for 25% of these GHG emissions (1), and that means the foodservice industry plays a crucial role in the race to reduce.
The quickest, easiest and most impactful way to a climate-friendly food system is to reduce the amount of meat we eat. Studies suggest that Europeans need to reduce their meat consumption by over 50% to limit (2) the worst of climate change. That means we need a new norm – meat should be a treat, not part of everyday life, especially beef and lamb.
We need to spearhead a new way of eating, both in foodservice businesses and at home. Consumers already know this, with one third of Britons having already reduced (3) the amount of meat they eat or gone fully meat-free. Restaurants, cafes, caterers, pubs and hotels and all foodservice businesses alike should seize upon the opportunity to be the business to give these consumers what they want and build a strong sustainable brand at the same time. This isn’t about demonising meat – it’s about enjoying it in moderation, and championing food which is good for the planet and for your business.
1 Poore & Nemecek, 2019. Science.
2 EAT-Lancet Commission, 2019.
3 Waitrose ‘Food and Drink Report 2018-2019. The era of the mindful consumer.’
As a collective, we have the power to create a better system; one that can sustainably support a healthier future for both people and planet. By becoming a member of the SRA you’re joining a community of like-minded change-makers who are spearheading the movement.