Got Beef? The Role of Traditional Ecological Knowledge and One Health in Managing the True Cost of Meat Consumption


  • Ankita Datar McMaster University


The effects of agricultural intensification are seen globally, with rising zoonotic pathogen emergence, irreversible soil and water contamination, natural resource scarcity and adverse health impacts on human beings. The majority of climate change research within the food industry attempts to improve efficiency of production and processing to reduce emissions, while simultaneously increasing yields. The underlying issues ingrained within food systems that promote overconsumption and wasteful consumption largely remain unaddressed. Without tackling consumption at every stage of the food cycle, eco-technologies will not make a dent on the commitments that countries have made to UN sustainable development goals, nor will they protect vulnerable workers within our food systems that are already facing climate calamities. Governance approaches need to move past market-mechanisms and soft regulations to tackle climate challenges within the meat production industry. It is crucial to shift our thinking beyond the concept of technological solutions that attempt to provide a band-aid fix for the effects of climate change. The interconnected and complex nature of climate change will require a combination of top-down and bottom-up approaches to enable structural change. The following paper emphasizes the climate impacts of overconsumption and wasteful consumption within the meat industry, outlining the importance of long-term sustainability through the integration of traditional ecological knowledge (TEK) and one-health in policy making. By engaging in truly sustainable food production, the climate-resiliency of vulnerable populations can improve by addressing economic and food security.




How to Cite

Datar, A. (2022). Got Beef? The Role of Traditional Ecological Knowledge and One Health in Managing the True Cost of Meat Consumption. Global Health: Annual Review, 1(7). Retrieved from