First we came for the pigs

Some interesting data on global meat production and consumption have been published by Worldwatch Institute. The environmental group conducted a research study which shows that meat production has risen 20% since 2001. Consumption of meat fell very slightly in 2011, with a global average of 42.3 kilogrammes in 2011, down 200 grammes when compared with the previous year.

The global average masks a wide disparity in consumption patterns, with 32.3 kg of meat consumed annually per capita in the developing world, and 78.9 kg in industrialised countries. With rising living standards in a rapidly-industrialising Far East comes an increased demand for meat.

Pork was the most popular meat in 2011, accounting for 37% of production and consumption, with a total of 109 million tonnes. But poultry looks set to overtake pig meat in popularity within the next few years. In the fast-food loving first world, are we here witnessing the consequence of a widely apparent urban cultural and culinary transition from schnitzels to chicken in a box?