Dutch people hopeful that one day they will eat less meat (but that day is not today)

A survey by Natuur en Milieu has revealed that 6 in 10 Dutch people are aware of the negative impact meat consumption has on the environment, and believe that in the future, people will eat much less meat. However, for the moment, meat consumption is actually remaining stable.

The average Dutch person eats about 40 kilos of meat each year. This number has not changed since 2005, according to Wageningen University, so it appears that while 62 percent of Dutch people are knowledgeable about the impact of meat on the planet, not many of them are changing their consumption practices. However, since last year, 10 percent more people are aware of the negative impact of meat on the environment, so some progress has definitely been made.

Translation: The majority of Dutch people don’t think eating meat every day is ‘of our time’. And a third believe that the damage meat causes to the earth should be included in the price. 

Why meat is bad for the environment

The figures of Natuur en Milieu show the same, but they believe that the awareness itself is good news, and maybe be a sign that things are slowly on their way to changing. The organisation itself is in favour of reduced meat consumption because of its harmful impact on the environment. For example, it takes 5 kilos of vegetable feed to produce a kilo of meat. This means, in practice, that a lot of land is needed to produce not a lot of food. Furthermore, cows emit methane, a greenhouse gas that causes far more warming than carbon dioxide.

Translation: The norms around eating meat are changing. The majority of people are aware that not eating meat one day a week helps the climate and nature.

3 in 10 Dutch people want higher taxes on meat

Natuur en Milieu also found that a third of Dutch people believe that the damaging consequences of meat should be accounted for in its price, for example through a greenhouse gas tax. We have seen Dutch people become more vocal about their concern for the environment in recent months, so it’s not surprising that some are calling for stronger measures in this survey.

Do you think Dutch people will be eating less meatloaf in the future? Let us know in the comments below. 

Feature image: RitaE/Pixabay

Ailish Lalor
Ailish was born in Sydney, Australia, but grew up by a forest in south-east Ireland, which she has attempted to replace with a living room filled with plants in The Hague. Besides catering to her army of pannenkoekenplantjes, Ailish spends her days convincing her friends that all food is better slightly burnt, plotting ways to hang out with dogs and cats, and of course, writing for DutchReview.


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