Bittman: We’re Eating Less Meat. Why?

Flexitarianism?

Vegetarian climate alarmist and New York Times food columnist Marc Bittman writes in “We’re Eating Less Meat. Why?“:

Americans eat more meat than any other population in the world; about one-sixth of the total, though we’re less than one-twentieth of the population.

But that’s changing…

The department of agriculture [sic] projects that our meat and poultry consumption will fall again this year, to about 12.2 percent less in 2012 than it was in 2007. Beef consumption has been in decline for about 20 years; the drop in chicken is even more dramatic, over the last five years or so; pork also has been steadily slipping for about five years.

Holy cow. What’s up?..

Yet conscious decisions are being made by consumers. Even buying less meat because prices are high and times are tough is a choice; other “sacrifices” could be made. We could cut back on junk food, or shirts or iPhones, which have a very high meat-equivalent, to coin a term. Yet even though excess supply kept chicken prices lower than the year before, demand dropped.

Some are choosing to eat less meat for all the right reasons. The Values Institute at DGWB Advertising and Communications just named the rise of “flexitarianism” — an eating style that reduces the amount of meat without “going vegetarian” — as one of its top five consumer health trends for 2012. In an Allrecipes.com survey of 1,400 members, more than one-third of home cooks said they ate less meat in 2011 than in 2010. Back in June, a survey found that 50 percent of American adults said they were aware of the Meatless Monday campaign, with 27 percent of those aware reporting that they were actively reducing their meat consumption.

We still eat way more meat than is good for us or the environment, not to mention the animals. But a 12 percent reduction in just five years is significant, and if that decline were to continue for the next five years — well, that’s something few would have imagined five years ago. It’s something only the industry could get upset about. The rest of us should celebrate. Rice and beans, anyone?

Read Bittman’s entire column.

5 thoughts on “Bittman: We’re Eating Less Meat. Why?”

  1. If this trend were to continue livestock would bay and large disappear. Where then would foodies get their organic foods or any foods for that matter as manure figures heavily in their production. Personally I just enjoy eating meat. Be it fowl, finned, or furred. Life is just better with a big slab of something on the plate.

  2. our family eat more meat. it is good for you. great protein and we are active.. EAT YOUR VEGETABLES AND MEAT AND EXERCISE.. NOTTHING TO DO WITH BEING FAT… I STILL RUN 3TO4 MILE A DAY AND ALSO
    KEEP A FISH DAY IN THE FREEZER… THE MORE THESE NUTS TELL ME NOT TO DO SOMETHING THAT
    MEANS IT MUST BE GOOD FOR YOU……I STARTED DRINKING 100% WHOLE MILK AND NOT ORGANIC
    EITHER, SCREW THE ORGANIC STUFF….

  3. With obesity on the rise eating less meat is a step in the wrong direction as consuming protein raises ones metabolism.

  4. Well since I grow my own meat I get to eat more that is not counted here! I also suspect that with the growing Local Food movement growing that fewer are buying through traditional markets? Don’t know if the USDA counts farmers markets and delivered local food in their survey.

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