As we emerge from the pandemic, it’s time to hit reset - we can’t go back to business-as-usual.
We need to take action to fix the climate and nature emergency, but we can’t do this without tackling food. We have been farming intensively for too long and depleting our natural capital, of which there is a finite amount.
Industrial animal agriculture is a key offender, with our growing appetite for meat and dairy pushing the planet to the very limit of its boundaries; degrading land, driving wildlife to extinction and fuelling climate change.
It doesn’t have to be this way. The Eating Better alliance is working towards halving our meat and dairy consumption by 2030, in line with reports from leading scientists worldwide. This is a vital step in fixing our food system as reducing the impacts of animal agriculture will help to mitigate climate change, halt and reverse the loss of nature and protect people from diet-related diseases.
This Earth Day we can all contribute to a better tomorrow by choosing greener, fairer and healthier diets. This means eating less meat and dairy, in favour of more vegetables and plant proteins such as nuts, grains and pulses - it’s less wasteful, better for wildlife and can help reduce our impact on the environment.
When we do eat meat and dairy, we can opt for better quality, locally sourced and organic which meets the highest environmental and animal welfare standards. By taking a #LessAndBetter approach to the way we produce and consume food, we can create a sustainable food system for all.
Follow our easy top tips to make small changes that can have a big impact on our health, the environment, animal welfare and social justice.
#LessAndBetter top tips:
- Reduce meat portion sizes. Try having a meat-free day each week, replacing your usual meat dish with lots of vegetables and other healthy wholegrains or pulses.
- Ask questions about the menu when eating out. A restaurant should be able to provide you with delicious plant-based options and tell you where they source their meat and dairy from.
- Go half and half. Use half the meat and cheese in lasagnes and chillies and double the amount of vegetables. Add a tin of beans or lentils and extra vegetables to a curry or a casserole.
- Take inspiration. Look to the cuisines of countries with well-known vegetarian dishes, such as India, for inspiration. Set yourself a goal to try one new dish per week.
- Look for ‘better’ labels when shopping. Look for labels that offer assurance for environmental standards and higher animal welfare such as Soil Association organic, RSPCA assured, Pasture for Life, or Free Range Dairy.
At Eating Better, we want to create the right environment to enable everyone to produce, buy and eat less and better meat and dairy, to benefit people, planet and nature. Find out how we’re doing this through our Better By Half roadmap here.