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  • Author or Editor: Øyvind Sundet x
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Current meat consumption trends are associated with extensive resource use, environmental degradation, and detrimental effects on animal and human health, making meat reduction a core sustainability target. The experiences of meat reducers, often conceptualised as flexitarians, have gradually attracted more academic attention. This literature has shown that in many cases meat reducers do not radically reduce their meat intake and have untangled a complex web of factors contributing to meat consumption, reduction and avoidance. This article contributes to a nuanced understanding of the experiences, approaches and challenges faced by meat reducers. The data was collected through in-depth interviews with 26 self-declared meat reducers in Norway. By framing consumption as embedded in social practices, this article highlights how broader cultural, social and material conditions structure eating and hence meat consumption. A central finding is that through processes of socialisation and habituation, performances of eating often conform to the prevailing conventions inscribed in the socio-material environment in which they are embedded. We thus question the popular depictions of individuals as efficient drivers of dietary changes and highlight the many factors involved in reproducing the ‘normalness’ of meat-intense diets, demonstrating how individual intentions, choices and habits are themselves rooted in, and circumscribed by, prevailing conventions, that is, practices.

Open access