“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.” Mahatma Gandhi
The creatures with which we share our planet are sentient beings. They feel fear and pain, and the majority of people do not want to abuse the position of power we have over them.
An animal-friendly diet means different things to different people. For some it will mean a completely animal-free diet which excludes dairy-products and eggs as well as meat and fish. Others are vegetarian. For others, being animal-friendly means avoiding intensively farmed produce and going for free-range and organic food where the animals have been treated with care and respect.
Even if you choose to eat meat and dairy, there are two big reasons for eating less of it. A whopping 18%, that’s nearly one fifth, of greenhouse gas emissions come from livestock farming, mostly from cattle and from the deforestation to grow their feed. To stabilise our climate we all need to eat a lot less meat and dairy than the average UK diet. And, as so often happens, caring for the wellbeing of the planet is also the best option for our own health – diets high in meat and dairy are simply not good for us! And to make it easy to do, free-range and organic does tend to be a little more expensive – which will encourage us to buy less of it and make sure none of it is wasted.
Planning a BBQ? Why not make veggie-burgers/sausages the “default” and have people let you know if they want to eat meat? OK, if that’s too radical, offer lots of seasonal salads and vegetable to fill people up – and serve smaller quantities of free-range or organic meat.