The World Wildlife Fund (WWF) in France is asking the nation to adopt a flexitarian diet, which is sometimes described as being “semi-vegetarian.” While no foods are forbidden, they say that the consumption of meat should be significantly reduced.
This is a bold request for a country that takes such pride in gastronomic excellence, its capital city boasting the best restaurant in the world the second year running. France’s reputation for culinary excellence is centered around meat, which is at the heart of famous dishes of boeuf bourguignon, coq au vin, and magret de canard.
Nonetheless, WWF France insists that reducing our intake of meat is a necessary step towards “reducing greenhouse gas emissions from food production.” At the same time, they also hope to reduce the pressure on fisheries and other resources.
In order to help implement these changes, they have devised a sample food basket plan that can be easily adopted by a family of four. The basket would typically cost 187 euros a week and see a 31% cut in meat, 40% cut in fish and 69% cut in factory processed food, compared to traditional French eating habits.
The report details further changes that include only eating factory based products once every three days as opposed to the current trend of once a day. In its place, they propose increasing the use of protein-rich foods like eggs.
This study shows that it is possible to find a balance between healthy eating and sustainability concerns. WWF France is also keen to point out that “the cost of the flex basket does not exceed that of the INCA3 basket,” reassuring any fears about this diet’s additional expense.