Meat Free Monday
Supported by Meat Free Monday
Why eat less meat?
To save water
- According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the livestock sector is “one of the top two or three most significant contributors to the most serious environmental problems, at every scale from local to global”.
- OECD reported around 70 % of freshwater withdrawal was used by agriculture in the world. The livestock sector is currently using about 20 % of freshwater for feed production.
- 15,415 litres of water are required to produce 1 kg of beef and 5,988 litres to produce 1 kg of pork.
- Only 322 litres of water are required to grow 1 kg of vegetables or 650 litres of water per 1 kg of wheat.
- For every litre of milk produced, a cow needs to drink at least 3 litres of water. For high performing cows, the water requirement corresponds to 150 litres of water per day.
To stay healthy
- The World Cancer Research Fund recommends we “choose mostly plant foods, limit red meat and avoid processed meat”.
- In 2010, a study carried out by Oxford University’s department of public health found that eating meat no more than three times a week could prevent 31,000 deaths from heart disease, 9,000 deaths from cancer and 5,000 deaths from stroke, as well as save the NHS £1.2 billion in costs each year.
- Former chief scientific officer Sir Liam Donaldson has said that reducing the UK’s consumption of animal products by 30 per cent by 2030 would prevent 18,000 premature deaths every year.
To save money
- According to Office for National Statistics figures for 2014, the average UK family spends £15.80 a week on meat and fish, with £4.20 and £3.50 being spent on fresh vegetables and fresh fruit respectively.
- The cost of meat has risen 10 per cent since 2007, yet most of the staples of a meat-free diet are comparatively cheaper: plant proteins such as dried beans or lentils typically cost less than the equivalent amount of animal protein.
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