World Hunger Can Be Solved With Vegetarianism
By Mark Fergusson
Chief Vegetarian Officer, Chief Executive Officer
Down to Earth ALL VEGETARIAN Organic & Natural
Honolulu, HI (22 May 2012) – The United Nation’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) reported that food production will need to increase globally by 70 per cent to feed the world’s surging population in 2050. The FAO says that efficiency gains in agriculture will be overwhelmed by the expected population growth.
As the global population surges towards a predicted 9.1 billion people by 2050, Western tastes for diets rich in meat and dairy products which is increasing globally is considered unsustainable in the long-term.
Simply put, the more people eat meat, the fewer people can be fed. For example, over 10 pounds of plant protein are used to produce one pound of beef protein. If these grains were fed to humans instead of animals, more food would be available for the 925 million people in chronic hunger worldwide. A research study by Cornell University found that the amount of grain used to feed livestock in the United States alone could feed 800 million people.
Water resource depletion is another significant negative impact of feeding livestock; producing one pound of beef or chicken requires 2,500 or 660 gallons of water, respectively. In contrast, producing a pound of tofu or wheat flour requires only 220 or 180 gallons of water, respectively. Compared with the meat products, a vegetarian diet consumes far less water and this can help preserve our planet in the long-run.
Some may be concerned about whether a vegetarian diet is healthy. In fact, a well-balanced vegetarian diet is actually more nutritious than a meat-based diet. The American Dietetic Association and the United States Department of Agriculture both agree that a vegetarian diet can provide the complete nutrition required for optimal well-being including all 10 essential proteins (amino acids) necessary for good health. In addition, vegetarians are at less risk for heart disease, cancer, obesity, diabetes, and a variety of other diet-related diseases which now cost the United States alone over US$ 1.2 trillion each year.
There’s more than enough food in the world to feed the entire human population. So, why are more than one billion people still go hungry every day? The meat-based diet is largely to blame. We cycle huge amounts of grain, soybeans, and corn through livestock rather than to directly feed starving people. If we stopped intensively breeding animal for food and grew crops to feed people instead, we could easily afford to feed everyone on the planet sustainably.
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Down to Earth was founded upon compassion and concern for the health and welfare of all living beings, both mankind and the animals, as reflected in their universally appealing slogans, “Love Life! Eat Healthy, Be Happy!”, and “Love Life! Love animals, don’t eat them!”
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