Eating three meals a day plus snacks has a considerable impact on the environment, our health, soil, plants and animals, agricultural and food service workers. To look after our planet, more people are paying attention to food production. For instance, understanding the process and the negative affects of plants and animals during the journey to the dining table. It is imperative that we all adopt an ethical eating plan if we are to protect the future of our world.

Be Picky About Your Plants

There is no doubt that becoming a vegan, vegetarian or just reducing your meat and animal produce intake can help preserve the planet. 

Farm animals contribute to 35-40% of worldwide methane emissions and 64% of ammonia emissions. Methane from cows is a potent greenhouse gas. About 28 times more potent than carbon dioxide at warming the Earth. Ammonia from animal urine can lead to acid depositions and excessive nutrients in soil, rivers, and lakes. It can negatively impact aquatic ecosystems and cause damage to forests, crops, and other vegetation. Limiting your consumption of meat and animal products will help reduce these emissions.

Consuming a completely plant-based diet does not mean you are 100% free from guilt. The mass production of certain crops such as soybeans has received fierce criticism for its role in South America’s deforestation, which is why consumers should look for foods manufactured through ethical soy farming  and suchlike. 

Photo courtesy of Spiske

Still Treat Yourself to Meat

Eating ethically does not necessarily mean that you must become vegan or vegetarian. You can still eat meat and animal products in moderation.

It is vital to opt for meat from animals that have been raised in an ethical manner. Avoid intensively farmed produce. Look for meat and dairy products that have been produced by a farm that cares for its animals’ welfare, encourages natural behavior, and uses natural, high-quality animal feedstuff. 

Photo courtesy of Timms

Ethical Eggs

Always buy free-range eggs. Free range means that the chickens are able to roam free outdoors and not be jammed into tiny cages like those on battery farms. If you have sufficient space in your garden, you could even keep your own poultry. You would be rescuing some birds from a battery farm!

Photo courtesy of Tuttle

Be Wary of Waste

One of the best ways to ensure your diet is more sustainable is to substantially reduce your waste. Today one-third of all food produced ends up in landfills, producing 4.4 million tons of CO2 equivalent per year. A person can reduce their food wastage by planning meals in advance before visiting the grocery store. This can also help prevent over-shopping. Learning how to store food correctly so that it lasts longer will help reduce food waste, as will being sensible about printed use-by dates and not taking them as gospel. Try to prevent throwing food away. Eat smaller portions, eat leftovers the following day or freeze food. 

Photo courtesy of Chan

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