Scientific Updates

Plant-based eating is sustainable

date
29.03.2017

The growing global population, increasing urbanization and economic growth are placing a huge demand on worldwide food supplies, especially animal products. This global demand, based on our current food consumption patterns, is neither sustainable nor feasible as it puts a tremendous pressure on the environment.

Animal-derived foods generally require more resources than plant-based foods, typically resulting in 15-fold more GHGe and requiring 10-fold more water and 5-fold more fossil fuel input (European Parliament STOA (2009)). Moreover one third of all land that is suitable for growing crops is used to produce feed for farmed animals.

Conversion of plant protein from feed crops into animal protein for human consumption is inherently resource-inefficient. Since 6 kg plant protein is required to yield 1 kg meat protein, on average, only 15% of the protein and energy in feed crops will ever reach a human mouth (Prof. Harry Aiking)

A number of countries are now including sustainability in their food-based dietary guidelines: all focus on increasing the intake of plant foods and reducing animal foods, while also reducing the amount of energy-dense, highly processed and packaged foods and encouraging people not to eat more than their energy requirements.

Shifting towards plant-based eating, while cutting down on animal-derived foods, can contribute to a healthier planet.

author
- Alpro Foundation

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