by Marion Nestle
Apr 12 2018

The fuss over kangaroo meat in Australia

I was fascinated to read in Global Meat News that the Australian agriculture department has had to come to the defense of eating kangaroo meat.

Australian animal welfare advocates oppose eating kangaroos, and some retailers are refusing to sell it.

Why eat kangaroos?

Last year, an increase in the kangaroo population in Australia led to industry experts’ encouraging consumers to eat more of the protein.  Government data revealed the kangaroo population grew from 27 million to under 45 million.

Kangaroo meat was also deemed a healthier choice for consumers by the Kangaroo Industries Association of Australia…who said that it was a nutritionally-rich and low-fat meat choice for consumers.

All of this reminded me of my experience with kangaroos in Australia a couple of years ago.

  • They are ubiquitous in the countryside and fun to watch, especially when sparring.
  • Restaurants serve kangaroo meat frequently.  I particularly enjoyed a Chinese restaurant that served Kung Pao Kangaroo.
  • I once tried to bring small (110-gram) cans of kangaroo (and emu) meat back to the US, but New Zealand customs officers confiscated them for exceeding 3 ounces.