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Worried about the future of the planet? The 'climate diet' may be for you

22 October 2020 3:17 PM

There's a move towards eating what is termed 'futureproof foods' which are more conducive to the sustainability of the planet.

As pressure to reduce food waste continues to mount, climate-conscious consumers are opening up to new ways of eating that are not only healthy for themselves, but for the planet too.

Ryan McFadyen on Head of Global Strategy at HaveYouHeard says consumers are pivoting towards a “climate diet,” consuming less meat and dairy, and seeking environmentally friendly alternatives.

Food brands will need to start meeting these consumer demands.

McFadyen refers to the Climate Diet as a way of eating what he terms 'futureproof foods.'

These are foods that have a sustainable impact or a reduced impact on the environment.

Ryan McFadyen, Head of Global Strategy at HaveYouHeard

While it is still coming off a low base, there is an increasing move towards vegetarianism, veganism, or flexitarianism.

We have seen that almost triple in growth, with about 25% of Millenials stating that they now consider themselves as flexitarians, if not vegetarian. So we are seeing a major adoption in that space.

Ryan McFadyen, Head of Global Strategy at HaveYouHeard

There have been shifts within the dairy industry over the past few years, with dairy alternatives on the increase.

Dairy alternatives now represent almost 10% of the global dairy industry with sales in excess of $12 billion per year.

Ryan McFadyen, Head of Global Strategy at HaveYouHeard

Dairy farmers in the USA declared a decline in sales of over $1 billion in 2019 alone.

So we are definitely starting to see this movement to a more climate diet alternate - and it is being driven by the environmental impact of human beings but also the food that we eat.

Ryan McFadyen, Head of Global Strategy at HaveYouHeard

It is also being driven by documentaries such as David Attenborough's witness statement 'A Life on Our Planet' currently on Netflix, creating a heightened awareness around this space.

There is an ongoing debate about what constitutes a 'climate-friendly' diet. There is certainly no one set of rules or guidelines, but it is argued that scientific consensus agrees on the need to minimise the consumption of animal products, red meat, and dairy in particular.

Other factors would be eating less processed, local foods such as fruit, vegetables, and legumes.

Listen to the audio below:


22 October 2020 3:17 PM

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