Changing global consumer habits for a healthier planet


As livestock production has a heavy negative impact on our climate, environment and health, Greenpeace wanted to launch a global campaign with the overall aim of changing people’s mindset about meat consumption. To increase the impact of the campaign, they needed insight into the cultural meaning of meat, the main drivers for and barriers to eating meat, and to test various message frames.


The study was based on an ethnographic online web forum setup in six different countries – Denmark, New Zealand, Thailand, Argentina, France and China. The web forum lasted two weeks in each country, during which participants were given a total of 10 tasks. Each forum was run by a native speaker moderator who facilitated discussions on their forum.


The study concluded that what we eat and the circumstances in which we eat hold various meanings in different countries, and that meat often plays “the lead role” at meals and is associated with many strong and positive values. Hence, the study gave rise to concrete and actionable recommendations on how to optimise the impact of the campaign by striking a balance between creating a strong sense of urgency and empowering people to act.