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Episode 607: The Politics of Meat ft. Jan Dutkiewicz

By Jasmin and Mariann — August 28, 2021

Political economist Jan Dutkiewicz, PhD, joins the podcast for a fascinating conversation about the ethical, political, legal, social, and environmental intersections of meat consumption. A policy fellow at Harvard Law and a postdoctoral fellow at the Swiss National Science Foundation, Jan shares his thoughts on something we have all wondered about — why does mainstream media fail to cover animal agriculture’s contributions to worsening climate change? He also discusses strategies for reforming factory farming, explains why politicians may be weary of discussing the detrimental effects of eating animal flesh, and shares his views on the future of cultured meat.

Jan is a political economist whose research examines the design, production, circulation, and consumption of everyday commodities, with a primary focus on meat and other food products. He has published articles and books on topics related to agriculture and food politics, corporate social responsibility, biodiversity, environmental politics, and the theory and practice of animal ethics. Most recently, Jan has turned his attention to the emergence of cellular agriculture and its potential to transform the global food landscape.

“The proliferation of alternative protein […] is extremely positive in helping speed along the shift away from an animal-based food system.” – Jan Dutkiewicz

Interview Highlights:

  • Are more people are making the connection between animal agriculture and climate change?
  • Jan’s perspective on whether chickens will continue to be the most abused animals on the planet
  • Why Jan is cautiously optimistic that treatment of animals and meat reduction is slowly becoming more visible in the mainstream media
  • Jan’s views on the future of cultured meat, the financial investments made, and why he thinks we’ll see the industry grow
  • Strategies for reforming factory farming
  • Why animal rights organizations should seek to maximize their efforts by increasing costs for animal agriculture and decreasing the throughput of factory farms
  • How to achieve a food system so that as many people as possible can have access to healthy, animal-free food options

Connect with Jan Dutkiewicz:

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Resources Mentioned:


This episode is brought to you in part through the generosity of A Well-Fed World. A Well-Fed World provides the means for change by empowering individuals, social justice organizations, and political decision makers to embrace the benefits of plant-based foods and farming. Learn more at


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Don’t forget to tune into Our Hen House’s other two podcasts: The Teaching Jasmin How to Cook Vegan Podcast, and The Animal Law Podcast.

The Our Hen House theme song is written and performed by Michael Harren.

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