The exploitation of animals and maintaining a nutritional diet are not the only reasons why people follow a plant based diet. As much as people do not want to hear it, the best way to reduce your harmful impact on the planet and lower your carbon footprint is to avoid animal products. You can buy an electric car, walk to work or not put your apples in a plastic bag, but one of the biggest things you can do is to stop eating meat and dairy (but you should still do the other things too!)
From the crops and water needed to feed the animals, to the transportation used, as well as the vast amount of grain feed required for meat production, these are all significant factors to deforestation, habitat loss and species extinction. Meat and dairy production is also responsible for 60% of agriculture’s greenhouse gas emissions; a massive sector that spans all the multitude of environmental problems.
FACT: Researchers at the University of Oxford found that if everyone stopped eating animal products, the global farmland use could be reduced by 75% – an area equivalent to the size of the US, China, Australia and the EU.. COMBINED!
Considerably lower quantities of crops and water are required to sustain a vegan diet, making the switch to veganism one of the easiest, most enjoyable and most effective ways to reduce our impact on the environment. The significant drop in greenhouse gas emissions and the land lost to agriculture is what our planet needs!
Veganism should not be so stigmatised, and in fact, if every family in the UK ditched meat for one meal a week, this would have the same environmental impact as taking 16 million cars off the road. Why should wanting something as big as this, be stereotyped so negatively? Of course, there are extreme activists who take matters into their own hands when it comes to preaching veganism to the rest of the world – it could be said that they’re actually doing more harm than good. However, if we really try and look past the extremities and think about the reasoning behind these crazy protests, it is all for the good of the environment and the animals.
Believe it or not, every little helps, and ditching meat and dairy for one day, or even one meal a week does help! You don’t need to change your diet completely, and whilst this would be amazing, I think it is important for people to realise that small changes are better than nothing at all. For the sake of a beef burger and a couple of chicken nuggets, when there are so many amazing alternatives out there, is it really worth it?
It’s become known that more and more shops and brands are adopting veganism into their ethos, and there are definitely more plant based products on the shelves. This increased awareness and accessibility makes it a lot easier to switch to a vegan diet! Not only that, the likes of Subway, Greggs, McDonald’s and now even KFC are offering vegan alternatives, and they’re really good! Definitely worth a try! To top
it off, nothing feels better than knowing that you are eating something delicious, as well as cruelty free.
The number of vegans in the UK have quadrupled over the past 3 years with the expectation that this will rise further. It is no surprise considering YOU CAN get the same amount of nutrients, vitamins and minerals out of a vegan diet. It doesn’t have to be costly, it can be healthy and it provides great satisfaction for the taste buds!