True Animal Protein Price
Paying the true price for animal protein products for better health, environment, animal welfare and social justice
Lead Applicant Organization Name
True Animal Protein Price Coalition
Lead Applicant Organization Type
Small NGO (under 50 employees)
If part of a multi-stakeholder entity (i.e. team), provide the names of other organizations and types of stakeholders collaborating with you.
Partners of the TAPP Coalition are organisations and companies in the sectors food, agriculture, health, environment and animal welfare. Examples of partners are Friends of the Earth, Proveg Netherlands, Youth for Climate, Fridays for Future, Compassion in World Farming Netherlands, Animal Coalition, Transition Coalition Food, Caring Farmers, Eosta, Dutch Cuisine, and Climate Neutral Group. Triodos Foundation is one of institutional donors.
Website of Legally Registered Entity
How long have you / your team been working on this Vision?
Lead Applicant: In what city or town are you located?
Lead Applicant: In what country are you located?
Your Selected Place: what’s the name of the Place you’re developing a Vision for?
The Netherlands, about 41000 km2
What country is your selected Place located in?
Describe your relationship to the place you’ve selected.
We are a coalition of Dutch organisations and companies, working towards a more sustainable food system. We propose an increase in prices for animal protein, to be distributed towards lower prices for plant proteins, payment to farmers and low income households. In The Netherlands, the proposed combination of price corrections is accepted by a majority of the public: 52-63% of the population. The government is interested in our model.
Describe the People and Place: Provide information that would be helpful for an outsider who has never been there and may have no context about this Place to better understand the area.
With a surface area of more than 41,000 km2, and a population of around 17 million people, the Netherlands is one of the world’s most populous countries. A quarter of the Netherlands’ land area lies below sea level. The low-lying areas consist mainly of polders, flat stretches of land surrounded by dikes where the water table is controlled artificially.
The Netherlands, which shares it borders with Germany and Belgium, is often referred to as “Holland”, the identity of the two western coastal provinces, North and South Holland, which are at the core of the country and have played a dominant role in the history of the Netherlands. Thanks to their location on to the Rhine-Maas estuary, these provinces are very important for the economy. They also contain the country’s principal administrative and commercial cities – Amsterdam, The Hague (Den Haag) and Rotterdam. Together with Utrecht, the capital of the province of Utrecht, they form the combined area of what is known as the Randstad conurbation, with a population of around 7 million.
The Netherlands has a temperate marine climate with cool summers and mild winters. The most distinctive feature of the country geographically – but also logistically and economically – is the Rhine-Maas delta with its seaport of Rotterdam, the largest in the western world. It is here that one finds a break in the weather pattern, with a milder continental climate to the south and a more vigorous weather pattern dominated by North Sea winds to the north.
As an open economy, the Netherlands is susceptible to international developments and is based on consensus. The Netherlands has a long tradition of negotiation, which lives on in close and regular contacts between trade unions, employers’ organisations and government. It is a member of all the major international organisations.
The Netherlands is one of the world’s largest agricultural producers, exporting 65 billion Euros worth of vegetables, fruit, flowers, meat and dairy products each year. The Dutch have become world leaders in agricultural innovation, pioneering new paths to fight hunger. Almost two decades ago, the Dutch made a national commitment to sustainable agriculture under the rallying cry “Twice as much food using half as many resources.” Since 2000, farmers have reduced dependence on water for key crops by as much as 90 percent. They’ve almost completely eliminated the use of chemical pesticides on plants in greenhouses, and since 2009 Dutch poultry and livestock producers have cut their use of antibiotics by as much as 60 percent.
What is the approximate size of your Place, in square kilometers? (New question, not required)
What is the estimated population (current 2020) in your Place?
Challenges: Describe the current (2020) and the future (2050) challenges that your food system faces.
Unabated, animal agriculture is set to take up 49% of the GHG budget allowable under the Paris Agreement until 2030 and the full budget by 2050. The global fight to save our planet is at a tipping point. As it stands today, conventional animal agriculture is responsible for 16.5% of the world's greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, 91% of the Amazon rainforest destruction and 80% of all extinction threats, while receiving less than 1% of global climate change mitigation funding (source: 50by40.org).
The problems associated with industrial animal agriculture are spiralling out of control. The ramifications of this system will have everlasting, devastating consequences for all facets of life. This includes catastrophic climate change, health hazards and crises, loss of biodiversity, accelerated deforestation, increased world hunger, animal welfare violations and water scarcity, to name a few.
Food prices do not reflect all costs relating to the production of consumption, like environmental costs, health and other costs. In addition, farmers often receive too low payments for a fair income. There for many stakeholders, including governments, companies, universities and ngo's are involved in 'true pricing' initiatives to have a common understanding of methods to calculate the 'true price' of food. They do this with the aim to make sure external costs (like costs related to greenhouse gasses or biodiversity loss) are reduced and included in consumer prices, eg. by fiscal policies by governments or price policies of supermarkets or food companies. In addition, farmers have to be paid fair prices too, including all costs they make and payments for a fair living.
Address the Challenges: Describe how your Vision will address the challenges described in the previous question.
The Coalition for a True Animal Protein Price (TAPP Coalition) has - with widespread support from society - been working on a intention for a fair price of food, including environmental costs, starting with meat and dairy products.
Nearly seventy percent of the Dutch people are prepared to pay a fair meat price, including environmental costs, according to a survey from 2018. This research shows that the majority of the Dutch population supports our proposal, on the condition that revenues are used for tax reductions on vegetables and fruits (9 to 5% VAT), compensation payments for low income households and payments towards farmers for sustainability and animal welfare measures.
If we return the additional costs of a fair meat price to all Dutch people and to farmers via a transparent 'Fair Food Prices Fund' and give at least a third of this Fund to farmers for sustainability and animal welfare measures, then this is the most logical way to make a positive change. If we do so, our eating pattern will improve, while meat, eggs and dairy will perform better in terms of effects on climate, nature and animal welfare. A change that Dutch people want and that our parliament will not want to get around to have it implemented by the government.
It is not an additional tax that the treasury enters, not a penalty on consumption. It is about an additional price that should have been in the fair meat price for a long time; you will pay the real social costs of meat. And the proceeds from that extra price go back to society in a transparent manner: directly to farmers and consumers, but also indirectly to the environment, animal welfare and health.
SEVEN BENEFITS of an excise duty on meat compared to increases in VAT tax tariffs on meat:
1. The price difference with organic and sustainable quality meat and 'conventional' meat becomes smaller
2. Tax revenues are higher, so higher revenues can be used for farmers or consumers in return
3. The environmental costs can be calculated and charged on meat products, in the case of an excise duty on meat
4. Robust tax income for the national government
5. Large regulatory effect (to reduce the consumption of meat)
6. Less administrative burdens according to government officials
7. Public support: use revenues for tax reductions on vegetables & fruits, payments to farmers and the poorest.
High Level Vision: With these challenges addressed, now provide a high level description of how the Place and the lives of its People will be different than they are now.
Paying the true price of meat and dairy and other animal protein products becomes the standard way of operating for better health, environment, animal welfare and social justice in The Netherlands.
Full Vision: How do you describe your Vision for a regenerative and nourishing food future for your Place and People for 2050?
Food prices do not reflect all costs relating to the production of consumption, like environmental costs, health and other costs. In addition, farmers often receive too low payments for a fair income. According to a FAO report in 2015, environmental external effects cost 2300 billion USD/year, more than double the market value of global food.
Many stakeholders, including governments, companies, universities and ngo's are involved in 'true pricing' initiatives to have a common understanding of methods to calculate the 'true price' of food. They do this with the aim to make sure external costs (like costs related to greenhouse gasses or biodiversity loss) are reduced and included in consumer prices, eg. by fiscal policies by governments or price policies of supermarkets or food companies. In addition, farmers have to be paid fair prices too, including all costs they make and payments for a fair living.
The TAPP Coalition has a focus on animal products like meat, dairy, eggs and fish. We started with developing studies to calculate a true price for beef, veal, pork and chicken meat in the Netherlands and the European Union in 2019. We translated this calculations to fiscal policies, to make sure consumers pay the 'true price' of meat products, including the price of greenhouse gasses, air pollution and biodiversity loss. For CO2 equivalents we use a price of 90 euro per ton CO2. On average, meat has to become 40 percent more expensive. Beef will be more expensive compared to chicken, because beef causes more greenhouse gas emissions. We propose a consumer tax of ca. 40 eurocents per 100 gram meat (average). Revenues will be used for:
1. lower prices for vegetables, fruits, potatoes, nuts and plant based meat products
2. payments to farmers for environmental, nature and animal welfare measures (1/3 to 1/2 of price increase meat)
3. compensation for low income households, to compensate for the higher price of meat (ca. 120 euro per year).
In The Netherlands, this combination of price corrections is accepted by a majority of the public: 63% of the population. We expect in other countries, this will be the same.
In the Netherlands, we propose to introduce a 'true meat price' starting in 2021 with low tariffs (16 euro cent per 100 gram meat on average), increasing to ca. 40 eurocents per 100 gram of meat in 2030. As a result, total meat consumption (in meat weight) falls from 45.3 kg per person in 2019 to 23.1 kg per person in 2030 (of which 9.3 kg pork, 2.5 kg beef and veal and 11.3 kg chicken). For information about the price elasticities used, see report CE Delft, Duurzaamheidsbijdrage vlees, 2019, Appendix A.4, to be translated in English and published 5th Feb 2020.
EU MEAT FACTS & SOLUTIONS
Europeans eat 69.3kg meat per capita in 2018 (source EU Commission)
A sustainable, health diet means 10 or 16 kg meat per capita (sources: Wageningen University, EAT Lancet healthy reference diet). UK meat dietary recommendation: 18 kg red/processed meat
The 512 million EU citizens account for 6.8 percent of the world’s population, but are responsible for 16 percent of the world’stotal meat consumption. World meat consumption growths with 1,2%/year .
World meat production is expected to grow from 300 mln tonnes in 2015 to 376 in 2030 by FAO.
EU citizens have a food footprint of 1070 kg of CO2 equivalent per year. Meat and dairy account for more than 75% of the climate impact from EU diets. EU Meat and dairy products contribute 6 % of the economic value of food but to 24 % of the environmental impacts (including CO2-emissions).
Reducing meat and dairy consumption is advised by the UN to realise the Paris Climate Agreement
11% of the German population is vegetarian, 10% of Swedish, 8% of Polish and 7,2% of Italians.
FAO expects global meat consumption to grow in 2050 compared to 2005 with over 50% (beef), 43% (pork) and 125% (chicken). Global annual meat consumption is growing with 1,2% (average 2014-2018). This is not at all in line with the Paris Climate Agreement.
We need meat consumption reduction policies, implemented by governments, starting in countries where meat consumption per capita is exceeding dietary guidelines and harms our health.
If European/OECD countries would increase the price of meat (like they did with CO2-taxes for fuels and unhealthy foods like alcohol too), they can use revenues for purpose to increase public support.
Revenues of efficient fair meat prices in the EU28 could total €32 billion/year and can be used for: €10-15 billion/year payments to EU farmers for sustainability income support, €7-12 billion/year for subsidies/lower VAT on vegetables, fruits, plant-based food and healthy/organic food. Another €6 billion can be used for compensations of low-income households to make meat affordable for all.
€4 billion can be used for developing countries to double nature reserves/forests, reduce greenhouse gasses, and adapt to climate change. In this way they can be seduced to agree with Climate Summit and Biodiversity Summit agreements in the end of 2020 in Glascow and China.
A fair meat prices will include all environmental costs like CO2 equivalent emissions, air pollution and biodiversity loss. If CO2emissions would be priced 60 euro/ton CO2, EU meat prices would have to increase with 17 eurocent per 100 gram chicken, 36 eurocent per 100 gram pork and 47 eurocent per 100 gram beef in 2030, starting with 10 eurocent per 100 gram in 2022 for all meat products.
This proposal is supported by 63% of Dutch consumers, if revenues are used to reduce VAT on vegetables/fruits and compensate farmers and low income households (source: tappcoalition.eu/news).
This proposal is accepted by Dutch government to be part of the proposals for a new fiscal system and a new government and will be proposed to Parliament soon (input for the new elections spring 2021).
Fair meat prices in the EU, including environmental costs are 17-47 eurocent/100 gram meat
Fair meat prices in the EU will lead to less consumption: -30% chicken, -57% pork, -67% beef in 2030
Fair meat prices in the EU will reduce GHG emissions (CO2 eq) with 120 Mton/year in 2030
(this equals 3% of all EU GHG emissions or all emissions of Denmark, Ireland, Slovakia and Estonia)
Fair meat prices in the EU will have €32.2 billion per year across 28 EU Member States by 2030
EU Fair meat prices have net EU welfare impacts of € 8.8 billion/year in 2030, mostly climate-related
Fair meat prices are generally in line with food recommendations from a range of European civil society organisations, 3 leading European health NGOs "Farm to Fork needs an effective consumption strategy" and demands from farmers, united within Copa Cogeca.
EU Commission is advised to announce a minimum ‘fair price meat fee’ of 1 euro per kg meat in 2022 or 2023. Tariffs in 2025-2030 conform proposal CE Delft/TAPP Coalition.
 https://www.wur.nl/en/activity/Mansholt-Lecture-2019.htm and Willett W, Rockström J, Loken B, et al. Food in the Anthropocene: the EAT- Lancet Commission on healthy diets from sustainable food systems. The Lancet. 2019.
 https://ec.europa.eu/jrc/en/health-knowledge-gateway/promotion-prevention/nutrition/food-based-dietary-guidelines: for UK : 350 gram red or processed meat per week maximum equals 18 kg per capita per year
 Weidema et al., 2008
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