1st Edition

Rio de Janeiro in the Global Meat Market, c. 1850 to c. 1930 How Fresh and Salted Meat Arrived at the Carioca Table

By Maria-Aparecida Lopes Copyright 2021
    239 Pages 14 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    239 Pages 14 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book examines the meat provision system of Rio de Janeiro from the 1850s to the 1930s. Until the 1920s, Rio was Brazil’s economic hub, main industrial city, and prime consumer market. Meat consumption was an indicator of living standards and a matter of public concern. The work unveils that in the second half of the nineteenth century, the city was well supplied with red meat. Initially, dwellers relied mostly on salted meat; then, in the latter decades of the 1800s, two sets of changes upgraded fresh meat deliveries. First, ranching expansion and transportation innovation in southeast and central-west Brazil guaranteed a continuous flow of cattle to Rio. Second, the municipal centralization of meat processing and distribution made its provision regular and predictable. By the early twentieth century, fresh meat replaced salted meat in the urban marketplace. This study examines these developments in light of national and global developments in the livestock and meat industries.


    1. Foodways and Diet in Nineteenth-Century Rio de Janeiro

    2. Changing Patterns of Spatial Distribution in Rio de Janeiro’s Meat Provisioning System (c. 1850–c. 1880)

    3. Charque for All: Technology, Taste, and Status in Rio de Janeiro (c. 1850–c. 1900)

    4. Brazil as a Tropical Producer: Improving and Supplying Cattle for Rio de Janeiro (c. 1850–c. 1930)

    5. The Public Abattoir Banishes Charque from the Carioca Table (c. 1890–c. 1910)

    6. Meatpacking Plants and a New Politics of Provision in Rio de Janeiro (c. 1910–c. 1930)

    Epilogue: The Fragilities of Globalization: Beef and the Environment


    Maria-Aparecida Lopes is professor of Latin American history at California State University, Fresno.