“In very personal terms, wherever they put a steak on the spot, that’s unbeatable.” With this affirmation, the President of the Government tilts the balance in favor of his Minister of Agriculture, Luis Planas, in the controversy over the intake of meat after the Minister of Consumption, Alberto Garzón, recommended reducing it. The words of the head of Consumption have caused the indignation of the agri-food industry.
“Pointing the finger at the meat sector does not seem fair to me,” said the Minister of Agriculture this morning after Garzón recommended that Spaniards eat less meat. “It harms health and our planet,” Garzón had defended in a video.
Sánchez, who has spoken this way at a press conference in Vilnius, where he appeared alongside the Prime Minister, Ingrida Šimonyt ha, has opted for irony to put an end to the controversy opened by Garzón when launching the campaign # LessMeatMoreLife in which it indicates the harmful effects of meat on health and the environment. “This video is not to scold anyone, but to reflect before the problem becomes chronic,” says the IU leader in the institutional recommendation.
The head of Agriculture did not take long to come out against that proposal and to show his discomfort with his colleague from the Council of Ministers in the face of the uproar caused in the agri-food sector. Planas has also assured that “the data indicate that in the last ten years the consumption of meat has decreased except in 2020 due to the pandemic” while the Consumption campaign recalls that Spain is the country that consumes the most meat in the European Union The latest data from the Ministry of Agriculture noted an increase of 10.5% in 2020 in the consumption of meat in households, being the category in which we spend the most (20% of our budget for food). it approached 50 kilos per year and each Spaniard spent an average of 350 euros on meat, according to the video.
Planas has also denied that he had not been informed of this institutional campaign. “It is not at all true, I had no knowledge that this campaign was going to be launched. [como ha dicho el ministro de Consumo]. I’m sorry to be used ”, he lamented.
Garzón has followed Sánchez’s words live during an interview on La Sexta and has also been ironic. “I like little done”, he said before explaining that his reflection “has been perfectly understood”: “What we say is that we must return to the Mediterranean diet, reducing meat consumption does not mean not eating meat but consuming according to to sanitary recommendations and that the origin is controllable, if it can be with intensive livestock, which is what protects the territory, jobs and the planet “. That position, said the person in charge of Consumption, “touches economic fibers”, but has ensured that the “debate” will be seen in the future as the one that took place a few years ago regarding tobacco. Garzón has assured that citizens can “contribute” to caring for the planet with their “consumption habits apart from structural measures.”
Despite the discomfort that Garzón’s words have generated, the report on Spain 2050 that Sánchez presented a few weeks ago Moncloa assumed that by then “it will be necessary to reduce the consumption of certain raw materials and products.” “This means that, in the coming decades, the Spanish population will have to reduce its intake of food of animal origin, the amount of clothing it buys, or the number of new digital devices and appliances it acquires per year,” says that document that pointed out that “the consumption of meat of the Spanish population is between two and five times higher than recommended”.