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The Economist: Poor people are living longer because they can afford meat, 'but it is bad news for the environment'

'Bold stance against poor people, Economist'

Image source: The Economist video screenshot

The Economist raised eyebrows this week while promoting an article about the benefits of people rising out of poverty and being able to afford meat, after suggesting that such progress "is bad news for the environment."

What are the details?

The London-based magazine published an article in May titled, "Global meat-eating is on the rise, bringing surprising benefits."

In promoting the piece via Twitter on Wednesday, The Economist wrote a message saying, "More people are eating meat around the world. That means they will live longer, healthier lives, but it is bad news for the environment."

The tweet included a video discussing how an "increasing number of people in rich countries are vegan or vegetarian but in the rest of the world the trend is going the other way" while warning that "this is a giant problem for the environment."

The video gave the reasoning that as more people in areas such as sub-Saharan Africa are able to buy meat and give up their vegetarian ways for a more nutrient-rich diet, global warming will speed up because increased livestock production will mean more greenhouse-gas emissions.

The Economist's followers were not impressed. Several mocked the magazine for its messaging, with one joking, "Meat is NOT for peasants!" Another scoffed, "Bold stance against poor people, Economist." Someone else asked simply, "Who let this headline happen."

Others were less kind in their responses and many cannot be printed here, but two additional common accusations from critics were that The Economist's messaging was racist and elitist.

One last thing…
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