Any Kangatarians Here?

Need something to talk about at the next cocktail party? How about trying this line:

            “Anyone here a kangatarian?”

Of course, you’ll need to know what a kangatarian is, and that’s where Bobby Dazzler’s Blog comes to your aid. A kangatarian is a person who will not eat meat except for kangaroo meat. You could say it’s a vegetarian who will also eat kangaroo meat.

I came across this when the Australian National University in conjunction with Oxford University Press (Oz & NZ division) announced that the “Oxford Word of the Month” for June is indeed “kangatarian”. And that both “kangatarian” and “kangatarianism” are being considered for inclusion in the next edition of the Australian National Dictionary. Pretty exciting stuff – unless you’re a kangaroo.

They tell us that “some of the appeal of eating kangaroo meat in preference to other meat is because it is thought to be healthier (it is a naturally lean meat), but kangatarians chiefly find the diet appealing on environmental grounds, because it does not rely on large-scale husbandry practices as other meat production does. Attempts to encourage a reluctant Australian public to eat more kangaroo meat, however, would probably entail the adoption of some of these practices.”

Kangaroo meat

Kangaroo meat is available in many Australian supermarkets, and is generally cheaper than beef.

I can remember having trouble convincing some overseas visitors that there is such a thing as kangaroo tail soup, and I take this opportunity to present convincing evidence that there is. Just try doing a Google search on “kangaroo tail soup recipe” or “canned kangaroo tail soup”.

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About dazzlerplus

Writing about the things that interest me helps me to discover what I think. One of my loves is the Australian Outback, and I travel out there often, and when possible take friends with me.
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7 Responses to Any Kangatarians Here?

  1. Anne Newton says:

    Although not a kangatarian, I’ve been a keen consumer of kangaroo meat in recent years. As you said it is lean meatbut it is also tasty and easy to cook. It is also appropriate on environmental grounds.

  2. dazzlerplus says:

    Anne, I hope your comment gets read by some of the Newsletter’s overseas readers who are a bit sceptical about such Aussie habits. Visitors to Australia have expressed amazement — even shock — that we are prepared to eat both the animals that appear on our national coat of arms, ie. the kangaroo and the emu. I think it’d be hard to find an American who’d admit to having dined on bald eagle meat.

  3. I have had kangaroo meat, but I prefer beef. As for eating bald eagle, its being our national bird wouldn’t keep me from trying it, but rather the fact that it is a meat-eater itself. Most meat-eating animals carry disease, and so are best avoided. On top of that, it is endangered. But if we’d gone with Benjamin Franklin’s suggestion, and had the turkey as our national bird, I’d have no problem continuing to enjoy it just because of the symbolism. So I think you can eat emu and kangaroo without any guilt. It’s not that they’re symbols — it’s that they’re safe to consume and not endangered.

  4. Lavinia Ross says:

    Haven’t heard of a Kangatarian before, but we don’t have roos over here. Roos are herbivorous wildlife, like deer or elk here. I take it these are wild, not farmed, so far?

    • dazzlerplus says:

      Yes, still plenty of feral roos. But I suppose if kangatarianism really takes off, we’d eventually be farming them, and then the same old problems would arise.

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