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77 percent of Russians Consume Local Food Daily: Survey

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A report, published by the National Geographic magazine, found out that 77 percent of Russians consumed local food, but despite of people eating more local and organic food, there was lack of information and influence on becoming environmentally sustainable consumers.

MOSCOW, September 30 (RIA Novosti) - A report, published by the National Geographic magazine, found out that 77 percent of Russians consumed local food, but despite of people eating more local and organic food, there was lack of information and influence on becoming environmentally sustainable consumers.

Russians are the biggest locavores [consumers of local food], 77 percent consume local food daily or several times a week,” stated the National Geographic report, released on Monday.

The research was done through a survey across 18 countries, measuring consumption habits, based on the relative size of its environment.

Russia along with Hungary, Sweden and Germany consumed more organic and natural food as part of the main diets.

India ranked first in food sustainability due to its mostly vegetarian population. The country’s culturally dictated eating habits means majority of the population does not eat beef, considered the most environmentally damaging meat, according to the National Geographic.

Other countries such as South Korea, Hungary, Australia, and Canada also had higher ranking than in a previous 2012 survey.

However, only 34 percent of those surveyed thought they had enough information about the food they ate, while 43 percent did not feel they had influence over how their food was produced.

Most people, according to the survey, did not agree that eating meat was bad for the environment or cited health and cost reasons for their meat consumption.

While food as a culture had positive impact in countries like India, Mexican food culture owed to it being ranked lowest in the survey for its diet, rich in beef and chicken. Mexico was followed by Japan, which consumes more fish and seafood than any other surveyed country.

The survey also found that Americans consumed the fewest fruits and vegetables and ate mostly packaged and processed foods, owing to their junk food culture.

But as eating habits on the overall appear to be improving, scientists are not confident about environmentally sustainable eating habits being the norm.

"We haven't seen broad, sweeping laws that would radically change how consumers interact with food," Nicole Darnall, a sustainability researcher at Arizona State University, told the National Geographic.

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