Beef + Lamb New Zealand chief executive Rod Slater has gone in to bat for New Zealand farmers after a newspaper article suggested environmental sustainability concerns were putting the heat on meat, with rapidly declining domestic consumption of beef and, particularly, lamb.

Speaking to Jamie Mackay on The Country today, Slater said the figures in the article, including that New Zealanders are eating less than 1kg of meat each a year, were inaccurate, and Kiwis were still eating a lot of beef and lamb, though not as much as we used to.

"New Zealanders are still eating beef and lamb. It's not as much as we were 20 years ago ... but to suggest farmers are to blame for the drop in consumption is just not correct."

He said Kiwis were consuming beef or lamb three to four times a week.

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Listen to the interview below: