The future of meat in our plates

The Waldt family at their home in New Jersey. Surrounded by $2500 worth of food. 90 Douglas Rd, Glen Ridge, NJ t: 973-259-0387

Photographie de Robert Clark, 2014

Seminar :  “Rethinking the future of food”

Wednesday, April  26 at 5pm at the ISCC (20 rue Berbier-du-Mets, Paris Métro 7 Les Gobelins) How can we analyze our current relationship to meat? What are some of the the major changes in practices and representations associated with meat today? Since our diets are fundamentally changeable and ever-changing, both on a historical scale and in terms of the everyday practices that interest food anthropologists,  the current polemics around meat (and animal products) tell us a lot about what it means to eat today.

Statistics show a steady decline in the ratio of meat to other foods in the French diet. In order to understand the factors that motivate these changes in dietary behaviors, and with the knowledge that these changes are often moticvated by and mediated around vegetarianism, we can consider the way meat is represented in a changing food system.

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More generally, we can also examine the stakes of meat in contemporary urban societies: the accessibility of this food and its modes of production in the broad sense), but also in terms of health concerns centred around food quality, lifestyles and our changing relationship to the natural environment. An analysis of consumer bases, as well as production and supply systems, also allows us to open up the perspective to data that are not purely French and to better understand the nature of the most recent controversies around meat.

Anne-Hélène Delavigne is an ethnologist and member of the Food 2.0 LAB. Her research interests include the “meat industry”, the status of animals and the “know-how” related to their transformation into meat.

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