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Poultry and fish and aquatic invertebrates have not displaced other meat sources

Abstract

Meat consumption of all types is a major contributor to climate change and other environmental problems, but poultry and fish and aquatic invertebrates have lower environmental impacts than most other meats. To evaluate whether the growth in consumption of lower-impact meats has suppressed other meat sources, I analysed cross-national panel data for 1961–2013. I found that the increased consumption of poultry and fish and aquatic invertebrates has not suppressed the consumption of other meat sources.

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Fig. 1: Global annual meat consumption over the period 1961–2013.

Data availability

As noted in the Methods section, the source data can be downloaded from the following links: https://ourworldindata.org/meat-production, https://ourworldindata.org/seafood-production and https://databank.worldbank.org/reports.aspx?source=world-development-indicators. The dataset constructed from these sources is available from the author upon request. Figure 1 is based on data downloaded from Our World in Data6,7.

Code availability

No special code is needed for the analyses. The STATA commands used for the analyses are presented in the Methods section. The STATA do-file is available from the author upon request.

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R.Y. conceived the study, performed the analyses and wrote the paper.

Corresponding author

Correspondence to Richard York.

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The author declares no competing interests.

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Supplementary information

Supplementary Information

Supplementary Tables 1A–3C.

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York, R. Poultry and fish and aquatic invertebrates have not displaced other meat sources. Nat Sustain 4, 766–768 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41893-021-00714-6

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