After caving to pressure from animal farmers, the Irish Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has deleted a tweet that encouraged people to cut down on red meat. The tweet in question stated: “Ready to be healthier, wealthier, and more fabulous? Cut down red meat intake.” The tweet continues by saying that people throw away 10% of the meat they buy, and it also advises trying out Meat-Free Mondays and veggie lunches. The post included a meme featuring a satisfied Sex and the City’s Samantha Jones, alongside the words: “The planet when you reduce your meat intake.”
The tweet was deleted reportedly after protests from the Irish Farmers’ Association (IFA). After removing the tweet, EPA released a statement explaining why it posted it. In the statement it says, “We regularly share sustainable options on social media platforms that some people might like to explore and, from time to time, this includes advice on food and food waste.”
Several prominent people expressed their agreement with the original tweet. The Irish Wildlife Trust wrote that we need “open debate on how we can adapt and survive the biodiversity and climate crisis, not the shutting down of scientifically based arguments.” Green Party councillor Eva Dowling wrote “Appalling bullying tactics from IFA. These stunts don’t help farmers and won’t help the planet. All aspects of our climate footprint need to be addressed, including diet. Well done @EPAIreland on sharing this crucial information in the first place.”
One could argue that the EPA should not have removed the tweet and cave to the pressure from the very farmers who are contributing to global heating, land degradation, animal suffering, pollution, and waste of resources. However, perhaps such removal has helped to amplify the message of the tweet, as articles such as this are now talking about it.