Today, nearly a billion people suffer from malnutrition due to lack of food.
While this is a complex issue and with multiple contributing factors (including geopolitical problems and wars), one overriding issue is that we are using massive amounts of our limited resources and croplands to produce feed for billions of “livestock” animals instead of food for humans, even though this results in substantially less food availability globally.
According the University of Minnesota’s Institute on the Environment,* of all the plant calories invested in producing animal foods, we only recover about 12% in the form of meat, dairy and other animal foods. This means we lose close to 90% of the calories when we go from plants to meat.
The planet is finite, and we have limited resources and land to grow food. Our population is already 7.6 billion people, and continuing to grow by over 80 million a year.
If we stopped eating animal foods and grew plant foods exclusively for direct human consumption instead, we would have enough food to feed an additional 4 billion people (also per University of Minnesota’s Institute on the Environment*).
Currently, poor nutrition causes nearly half of deaths (45%) in children under the age of five (3.1 million children every year). Our exploding human population, going from 1 billion to over 7 billion in just ~200 years, has placed serious strain on our planet’s finite resources. And our population is projected to hit a staggering 10 billion by just 2050.
Apart from a much needed slowing of our population growth, our food choices are absolutely critical to ending this humanitarian tragedy. We must urgently move away from animal agriculture and towards vegan food systems.
Please do your part by living vegan, to help fellow human beings, the environment, your personal health, and (of course) to end the needless killing and suffering of countless billions of nonhuman animals as well.
*Click here to view the above referenced study from the University of Minnesota Institute on the Environment (Redefining agricultural yields: from tonnes to people nourished per hectare).