Meat Tax Proposed in Europe to Tackle Climate Change

Global meat industry
©pathdoc - stock.adobe.com

Meat could follow tobacco and sugar as a new target for the taxman. In Germany, Sweden and Denmark, proposals are underway to raise tax on processed and red meat products, in a bid to curb consumption and fight climate change according to a study by Fitch Solutions.

So called “sin taxes” have previously gone global on alcohol, tobacco and high sugar food and drinks, to compensate for the wide range of health problems caused by those products. Now the same is being proposed on meat, with an ever growing body of research linking heart disease, colon cancer, diabetes and more diseases to excessive meat consumption.

If they were to take off, the proposed taxes could meet with substantial opposition in countries such as the USA or Brazil, both big meat producers and consumers. But other countries are already considering such a progressive tax to combat the health and climate crisis, following on from a recent Oxford University study which explicitly revealed the true cost of meat.

“The global rise of sugar taxes makes it easy to envisage a similar wave of regulatory measures targeting the meat industry,” Fitch Solutions said. However, “it is highly unlikely that a tax would be implemented anytime soon in the United States or Brazil.”