The Month in a Minute: March 2024

March’s top stories about climate, animals and health.

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Florida’s legislature passed a bill banning the sale of cultivated meat in the state prompting Representative Dean Black to comment that “cultured meat is made by man. Real meat is made by God himself.” Meanwhile, a new study found that the top 55 industrial livestock companies received billions in credits despite their monumental environmental toll. In Wisconsin, researchers are using satellites to identify the illegal spread manure.

Plus, wondering what the next trend in alternative proteins will be? Look no further than bamboo.


Livestock emissions should peak by 2025 and then drop by 61 percent by 2036 in order to meet Paris Climate goals, suggests a new report out of Harvard.

Bird flu has been identified in milk. Health officials state that it poses no threat to consumers, as pasteurization kills the disease.

At Burger King restaurants across Germany a plant-based burger is now cheaper than a beef burger.

Here are more headlines that caught our attention this month:


The pork industry is funding PhDs to study ways to boost trust in pork, documents reveal.

Undercover crew finds cannibalism, untreated wounds and cramped and filthy conditions at Cross Farm in England, spurring calls for legal action.

RSPCA president puts pressure on the charity that certifies welfare of farmed salmon by calling for a boycott.

Free-range egg farms that supply to supermarket chains have been stripped of their RSPCA Assured status after an undercover investigation found hens living in ‘appalling’ conditions.


A new study finds swapping half of your typical red meat intake for plant protein reduces your diet-related carbon footprint by 25 percent, and may also boost your lifespan.

A Danish court ruled this month that a leading pork producer’s “climate-controlled” claim is misleading.

The WWF allegedly dropped a study highlighting farm pollution linked to the supply chain of its former supermarket partner, Tesco.

Many of the tactics used to make dairy farming more climate friendly are really little more than greenwashing.


A report released this month found that the meat industry has bankrolled millions worth of ads aimed at discrediting plant-based diets while minimizing the negative impacts of the animal agriculture industry.

Farmed salmon are dying en masse — underlining the many issues with raising the fish for food.

Nitrate-fouled water from factory farms causes a host of medical problems for residents of rural Minnesota.

Scientists are struggling with how to stop the spread of bird flu among seal populations.

Law & Justice

Around 46 million Americans live in states that have introduced bills to ban cultivated meat, the latest escalation in a surprising culture war.

The fight over Cedar — the goat killed against his owner’s wishes — continues, as the courts attempt to pinpoint the facility responsible for slaughtering the goat.

An animal rights group in Sonoma County has gathered signatures to put an initiative on the November ballot that aims to phase out factory farming in the area.

Advocates are concerned that the livestock industry basically got a pass from a new rule requiring public companies disclose the climate risks of their business to investors.

Future of Food

A new paper says two university research centers have essentially functioned as a P.R. arm for the meat industry.

The Bezos Earth Fund is pouring $60 million into revamping alternative proteins as part of its push to make food more sustainable.

The University of Texas partnered with the Humane Society of the United States to increase its plant-based offerings.

A new cat food made of cultivated chicken will be marketed to owners who want to feed their cats without the guilt.

Some farmers have turned from livestock to crops to avoid the financial pitfalls and thorny ethics of industrial agriculture.

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