Business

Brazil’s beef consumption hits all-time low amid price hikes

With a weakened currency and an economy ravaged by the pandemic, Brazilians are being priced out of beef on supermarket shelves

With a weakened currency and an economy ravaged by the pandemic, Brazilians are being priced out of beef on supermarket shelves
Meat plant in São Paulo. Photo: Alf Ribeiro/Shutterstock

Looking at the average shopping carts of Brazilian consumers in 2021, one could be excused for thinking that Latin America’s biggest country is experiencing a wave of vegetarianism. Beef consumption has dropped to its lowest level in 25 years, and Brazilian families are increasingly turning to alternative sources of protein, such as eggs, to make up their daily diets. Brazilians aren’t necessarily overlooking beef out of choice, however.

The price of animal protein has skyrocketed as a result of several factors: cattle stocks are down, the Brazilian currency is devalued, and several agricultural regions have been blighted by...

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