The world needs more protein, but animal-based protein intake is by no means sustainable. Legumes are a good alternative to meat and thanks to their biological nitrogen fixation capacities, they also benefit the environment.
As the world’s population grows, so does our demand for protein. One possible sustainable source of protein is legumes (beans, lentils and so on). Vegetarianism and veganism have attracted increasing interest in recent years, but legumes remain not popular enough among consumers. The Mediterranean diet is rich in legumes, but according to Bálint Balázs, a leading researcher at the environmental social research group, ESSRG, based in Hungary, while legume consumption is more common in Mediterranean countries, it is not so popular in Europe as a whole. In fact, even Mediterranean countries are consuming fewer and fewer legumes, despite their traditional use of fava beans, lentils and other pulses.
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