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Is kangaroo the best red meat?

Kangaroo meat is tasty, healthy, and according to a recent report, even good for the environment. Read on to know more about this new research.

india Updated: Oct 22, 2010 01:38 IST

It’s tasty, healthy, and according to a recent report, even good for the environment. All these factors point to one thing — kangaroo meat could well be the best red meat to have.

Kangaroos live in the wild, are protected by legislation, and are harvested by licensed shooters in accordance with a strict code of practice. In addition, their digestive systems differ from ruminants like cattle and sheep, so they don’t clog the air with methane, which some say makes their meat a good choice for combating global warming. In addition, “one kangaroo consumes about a third as much plant material as a sheep, and just 13 percent of the water,” states New Scientist.

While roo farmers say it’s easy to produce more product, increasing the public’s appetite for it is a bigger challenge. In Australia, kangaroo is found on restaurant menus and store shelves, but most Australians see it as an occasional meal rather than a staple. New Scientist cites a 2008 survey of almost 1600 Australians that found only 15 percent eat roo meat at least four times a year. Europeans, however, have a stronger taste for it, with 70 percent of kangaroo meat exported to Germany and France.

Because it is extremely low in fat (about 2 percent), kangaroo meat is healthful and high in protein. However, like camel meat, another reportedly healthy choice that is popular in the Middle East and sometimes served in Australia, it can taste dry, so is commonly mixed with other meats to form sausages and burgers. Kangaroo meat also has a very high concentration of conjugated linoleic acid, which has been attributed with a wide range of health benefits including anti-carcinogenic and anti-diabetes properties.

First Published: Oct 21, 2010 17:19 IST