Global, regional, and national consumption of animal-source foods between 1990 and 2018: findings from the Global Dietary Database

by Victoria Miller, PhD – Julia Reedy, MS – Frederick Cudhea, PhD – Jianyi Zhang, PhD – Peilin Shi, PhD – Josh Erndt-Marino, PhD et al.



Diet is a major modifiable risk factor for human health and overall consumption patterns affect planetary health. We aimed to quantify global, regional, and national consumption levels of animal-source foods (ASF) to inform intervention, surveillance, and policy priorities.


Individual-level dietary surveys across 185 countries conducted between 1990 and 2018 were identified, obtained, standardised, and assessed among children and adults, jointly stratified by age, sex, education level, and rural versus urban residence. We included 499 discrete surveys (91·2% nationally or subnationally representative) with data for ASF (unprocessed red meat, processed meat, eggs, seafood, milk, cheese, and yoghurt), comprising 3·8 million individuals from 134 countries representing 95·2% of the world population in 2018. We used Bayesian hierarchical models to account for differences in survey methods and representativeness, time trends, and input data and modelling uncertainty, with five-fold cross-validation.