Enjoy that steak while you can.

New Zealanders should be meat-free by 2050, says scientist Dr Mike Joy.

In a heated discussion on The Country radio show this afternoon, Dr Joy said there should be no animals in the food chain by 2050.

He made the point in a debate about water quality, the Havelock North crisis and whether intensive farming was to blame for the degradation of our waterways.


Dr Joy, a Senior Lecturer in Environmental Science and Ecology at Massey University, and Waikato University Professor of Agri-business Jacqueline Rowarth went head to head on the issue in the debate chaired by The Country host Jamie Mackay.

When discussing the fencing of waterways and keeping stock away from streams and rivers, Dr Joy said animals should be out of the food chain by 2050 for other reasons too including climate change and energy transfer.

Professor Rowarth said there is no evidence intensive dairy farming caused the Havelock North water contamination crisis and that the solution lies with smarter feeding of cows and better systems to capture and utilise effluent and nitrogen run-off.

Listen to parts 1 and 2 of the debate below: