Regional land use efficiency and nutritional quality of protein production

IlkkaI Leinonen*, Pietro PM Iannetta, Michael MacLeod, RM Rees, Wendy Russell, CA Watson, AP Barnes

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
104 Downloads (Pure)


Strategies for achieving environmental sustainability of protein production vary regionally. In this study, a framework was applied that would quantify a region-specific contribution to global protein supply with a special focus on protein quality i.e. essential amino acid composition. The framework was applied in Scotland and showed that high-quality human-edible protein from that region
currently emerges mainly from animal production. Considering future protein scenarios, the land requirement for pulses for producing a certain amount of essential amino acids in Scotland would be similar to the land requirement for potentially human-edible feeds needed in cattle production.
Reducing the current use of agricultural by-products in livestock feeding would considerably increase the land use demand for other, potentially human edible feed crops.
Original languageEnglish
Article number100386
JournalGlobal Food Security
Early online date8 Jun 2020
Publication statusPrint publication - Sept 2020


  • Amino acids
  • Climate change
  • Food production
  • Land use
  • Livestock
  • Protein


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