Circularity in animal production requires a change in the EAT-Lancet diet in Europe

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Abstract

It is not known whether dietary guidelines proposing a limited intake of animal protein are compatible with the adoption of circular food systems. Using a resource-allocation model, we compared the effects of circularity on the supply of animal-source nutrients in Europe with the nutritional requirements of the EAT-Lancet reference diet. We found the two to be compatible in terms of total animal-source proteins but not specific animal-source foods; in particular, the EAT-Lancet guidelines recommend larger quantities of poultry meat over beef and pork, while a circular food system produces mainly milk, dairy-beef and pork. Compared with the EAT-Lancet reference diet, greenhouse gas emissions were reduced by up to 31% and arable land use reduced by up to 42%. Careful consideration of the feasible substitutability between animal-source foods is needed to define potential roles of animal products in circular human diets.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)66-73
JournalNature Food
Volume3
Issue number1
Early online date6 Jan 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2022

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