Modernizing meat production will help us avoid pandemics


Modernizing meat production will help us avoid pandemics

17 March 2020
The coronavirus outbreak stresses the need to change how we make our meat.

The world is transfixed by the novel coronavirus outbreak spreading around the globe. It is becoming clear that increasingly draconian lockdown measures and travel restrictions are often too little, too late. Public health officials are pointing out that, at this point, containment is akin to shutting the barn door after the horses have left.

However, in today’s globalized world, the horses arguably left the barn long ago.

In addition to trying to round up the latest stampeding pandemic, we need to examine the circumstances that enable these zoonotic diseases to leap from another species to humans. Fortunately, we now know the circumstances that give rise to zoonotic outbreaks, and we have the technology to vastly reduce this risk by modernizing our food system.