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'Swedes should eat more rabbits': scientist

The Local/rm · 20 Feb 2012, 14:47

Published: 20 Feb 2012 14:47 GMT+01:00

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”We need to find alternative sources of protein which don't strain resources to the same extent,” said Carl-Gustaf Thulin, Director for the Center for Fish and Wildlife Research at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (Sveriges lantbruksuniversitet) to the Sydsvenskan newspaper.

According to a report in daily Sydsvenskan, preliminary figures from the Swedish Board of Agriculture (Jordbruksverket) show that Swedes eat approximately 86 kilogrammes of meat every year, with chicken and beef being the favourites.

One explanation for the increase is the recent food trends that promote a diet high in protein but low in carbohydrates. The problem is just that the increase in meat consumption, especially in the case of beef, is taking its toll on the environment.

This, Thulin argues, could be alleviated should Swedes just get over their qualms about their furry friends and look at rabbits as food instead of as pets.

”I think that we are often getting away from the origins of the meat, from the proximity of life and death. We are 'cuddlyfying' the animals, we think they are cute and then we gorge on a fillet of chicken when someone has already done 'the dirty work'. If we eat meat we ought to see the connection that animals are food, ” Thulin told Sydsvenskan.

According to Thulin, rabbits are the ”fish of the mammals”, eating roughage and transforming it efficiently to protein.

Story continues below…

”In southern Europe this is a highly appreciated form of meat. Rabbit breeding is under-developed in Sweden and could be a great complement for farmers,” Thulin told the paper.

On March 22nd, Thulin will be holding a seminar called Rabbits, Rabbits, Rabbits (Kaniner, kaniner, kaniner) at the Royal Swedish Academy of Agriculture and Forestry (Kungliga skogs och lantbruksakademien) to bring the issue to the forefront of the discussion.

The Local/rm (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

16:05 February 20, 2012 by Douglas Garner
Let's not forget goat!
16:06 February 20, 2012 by Vermaldeehide
That rabbit does not look happy about having to pose for this particular story. Hope he got paid well.
16:22 February 20, 2012 by klubbnika
Poor rabbits! Leave them alone.
16:26 February 20, 2012 by BillyB
Rabbit stew is lovely!
16:52 February 20, 2012 by Cornelius Hamelberg
It's not kosher !
17:32 February 20, 2012 by colombianska_tjej
Hahaha, I was going to mention the face of the rabbit in that picture, but Vermaldeehide did it before.
18:06 February 20, 2012 by redfish
All rabbits should die and be eaten.
18:47 February 20, 2012 by wxman
"The problem is just that the increase in meat consumption, especially in the case of beef, is taking its toll on the environment." This is a totally false statement with no data to substantiate it. Typical of socialist control freaks - - make something up out of thin air and then start preaching it.

Remember what Herr Goebbels said, "If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State."
18:57 February 20, 2012 by Flygger
Eat rabbits !!!!

Has anybody ever watched Watership Down and seriously considered this ?

Mind you I'd eat the ones I didn't like in that documentary so fine by me.. but only the big fat nasty ones like the General. He deserved to be eaten more than any other animal.

I was watching another documentary about skinning dogs for their pelts.

What a waste. They had 101 dalmations and were seriously going to let the whole lot go to waste.

Thank goodness Lidl bought the carcasses up.. I think.
19:08 February 20, 2012 by Avin a go
#wxman Meat is predominately imported from countries that are cutting down the rainforest to make an income from cattle production. i.e.: Brazil. If you have a small holding an you use a local butcher I agree with you, but that isn't the case. I have a small holding, pigs, sheep, goats, chickens, bees all environmentally friendly, but that isn't the story.

Most cattle is kept in in winter, fed silage etc huge use of land, electricity bla, bla, bla.
19:45 February 20, 2012 by Greysuede
Spare rabbits! They are indeed beautiful and nice than some human beings!
21:02 February 20, 2012 by hackie
How does a rabbit manage to see the front? The eyes are located at the side. Haha.
21:45 February 20, 2012 by Twiceshy
Words to live by: "nice to pet - better to chew"!

This goes for cows, rabbits and many other things btw!
06:47 February 21, 2012 by Douglas Garner
Wxman ... there are some excellent studies about the environmental footprint of different animals as food sources and the cow is one of the worst. Your comment is unfounded.
07:12 February 21, 2012 by skogsbo
wxmman, a wise man once said if you ignore the truth, it doesn't go away. The cattle take the most space, time and feed per kilo of meat of all the domestic stock. I know because I have some.

Deer, venison is the food of the future. They can live almost wild in a large fenced enclosures, need almost no medical treatment at all(unlike sheep), can live off grass / hay all year round outside. Birth naturally without any human invention. Plus the meat is excellent for all types of cooking.
08:57 February 21, 2012 by Pengy
Rude! Poor, poor rabbits!
10:52 February 21, 2012 by Åskar
Rabbits are good. They are also a vermin.
21:41 February 24, 2012 by Bigbunny
Swedes should leave the damn bunnies alone and go vegan -- and watch the rates of osteoporosis plummet. Eat your carrots, kale & cabbages DIRECTLY.
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