EJN Winds Down Successful Collaborative Reporting Project on One Health and Meat in the Asia Pacific

a line of plant-based burger patties
EJN Winds Down Successful Collaborative Reporting Project on One Health and Meat in the Asia Pacific

Our special collaborative reporting project on One Health and meat production and consumption is winding down and will mark its end in November. The project, which launched in August, has covered lot of ground. Eight different outlets across eight different countries in Asia and the Pacific have produced 14 (and counting) stories.

The stories culminated with a Twitter Spaces event devoted to the project on October 18, which was attended by about 115 social media followers and covered topics ranging from how to tell compelling stories about a nebulous topic (One Health), all the way to the challenges and rewards of doing collaborative journalism.

One Health is a framework for understanding the relationship between human, animal and environmental health. 

Many of the partners shared sources, data, peer-reviewed drafts, and co-produced content. Many also worked across borders and vastly different media cultures—our partners range from a science news outlet in India (The Wire Science) to a daily newspaper in Fiji (Fiji Sun). The journalists in the project covered a highly charged topic (meat, especially meat consumption) — with all its cultural, political and economic implications — in a careful and engaging way. 

“The process of collaborating was very helpful for our stories,” said Siew-Lyn Wong, a Malaysian journalist who works with Macaranga and reported on pig farming in the Southeast Asian country. Wong reviewed drafts of stories by partners at The Wire Science and Vietnam’s Tia Sáng, both of whom focused on intensive livestock farming and resulting pollution. Additionally, she utilized databases on meat production and livestock greenhouse gas emissions that a partner from Bangkok Post (Thailand) put together for all the journalists participating in the project.

“Collaboration helped make the research easier and refine the angles used [in our stories],” Wong added.

“This was a tricky project to undertake,” said Special Project Editor Sam Schramski. “Asia Pacific isn’t necessarily a region where a lot of people cover the relationship between meat and the environmental consequences of its consumption and production. But it’s a hugely under-covered story in the region.”

“Moreover, when you add the ‘systems thinking’ idea behind One Health and an emphasis on cross-border collaboration to the equation, the stories become even fuller,” Schramski added. “EJN is very pleased with the outcome.”

For more on the special project, click here.

Banner image: Jinzi Plant Meat is a cultivated meat brand in mainland China, which was unveiled in Shanghai on October 16, 2019 / Credit: VCG/VCG via Getty Images.

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