Meatfree Mondays is about raising awareness of the numerous personal health and environmental benefits of reducing our meat consumption.
The facts below outlines some of the reasons to start building a meat free day into your week.
- Australians are some of the world’s biggest meat eaters. Each day, we eat on average between 116-200g of meat. With global meat consumption averaging 100g a day, many Australians are consuming almost double the global amount.
- While world population doubled in the second half of the 20th Century, its appetite for meat increased five-fold. With the world set to hit 9 billion people by 2050, our demand for meat and milk is estimated to double by 2050.
- 9 of out 10 Australian adults aren’t eating the amount of vegetables they need. Taking a day off meat offers a chance to build nourishing vegetables and meat free proteins into the average week as part of a healthy, more balanced diet.
- Eating large amounts of red meat increases the risk of bowel cancer – a cancer which affects both men and women, young and old. Reducing red meat consumption overall in high income, high consumption countries such as Australia is now recommended by leading international medical authorities.
- Cardiovascular disease is the most common cause of death in Australia. Reducing the amount of meat based foods you eat can reduce the consumption of saturated fat – a known risk factor for cardiovascular disease.
- In Australia, livestock industries are responsible for around 10% of our total greenhouse gas emissions. Globally, research suggests that livestock production accounts for an even larger percentage of global greenhouse gas emissions – more than the entire global transportation sector put together.
- Livestock production is a key player in global emissions because cows, sheep and other ruminant animals produce methane and nitrous oxide – two highly potent greenhouse gases 25 times and 256 times more powerful than carbon dioxide respectively.
- Livestock production accounts for 70% of all agricultural land around the world. This includes 30% ‘feedcrop’ – crops grown solely for the purpose of animal consumption. Of all arable land available to grow crops, 33% is used to supply feed to livestock.
- Meat production is a water-intensive business. While estimates vary on how much water is required to produce a kilo of beef, it is clear that consumers can reduce their water footprint by reducing the amount they eat. It is estimated that the production of 1kg of grain-fed beef requires 5 to 40 times as much water as 1kg of cereal. For animal protein more generally, 1kg requires about 100 times more water than 1 kg of grain protein.
Get Behind the Movement
Every Sunday we will post some excellent Meatless recipes to make your meatless Monday more enjoyable