V. for Vegetarian & Vegan
For the animals, the environment, your health, world resources

Animals killed for food since you opened this web page:

0 marine animals | 0 chickens | 0 ducks | 0 pigs | 0 rabbits | 0 turkeys | 0 geese | 0 sheep | 0 goats | 0 cows and calves | 0 rodents (excluding rabbits) | 0 pigeons and other birds | 0 buffalos | 0 dogs and cats | 0 horses, donkeys, mules, camels

[based on 2007 statistics; see ADAPTT – Animals Deserve Absolute Protection Today and Tomorrow, Action for Animals, and Society of Peace for more information; also see Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations for statistics]

Pictures of herbivores

"Like Animals"
(song from Dr. Dolittle)

Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine
VivaVegie's 101 reasons to be vegetarian
The UK Vegan Society's "Why Vegan" pages:
The Animals
Your Health
The Environment
Food Resources
Other Information

SATYA (monthly magazine, 1994-2007)

Excerpts from The Heretic's Feast, by Colin Spencer
Isaac Bashevis Singer
"For the animals, it is an eternal Treblinka."

Excerpts from Dominion, by Matthew Scully
"An Open Letter to the Bishops on Hunting," by Andrew Linzey
"Food Choices and the Environment," by Dale Lugenbehl
Cowspiracy: clips, references
"You can’t be an environmentalist and eat animal products. Period."

Animal Rights
People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals
The Committee to Abolish Sport Hunting

Vegan for Peace: Nonviolence begins with our diet

(about calcium)   (about dairy)   (other info)

Other info (various sources, primarily Diet for a Small Planet, by Francis Moore Lappé, 1982, and Diet for a New America, by John Robbins, 1992) — also see Cowspiracy references and calculations:
  • Eighty percent of the corn and 95% of the oats grown in the U.S. go to animals raised as food. Worldwide, 75% of all grain produced goes to animals.

  • Meat contains only 10% of the protein that was in the grains the animals ate. The same amount of grain used to produce a pound of beef could feed more than 30 people.

  • Producing a calorie of beef protein requires 40 times more fuel than producing a calorie of soy protein. The production of one pound of steak (500 calories) requires 20,000 calories of fossil fuel.

  • Producing a pound of beef uses 200 times more water than producing a pound of wheat. 4,200 gallons of water per day are required to feed the average meat-eater, compared to 1,200 gallons for an ovolactovegetarian and 300 gallons for a vegan.

  • Half of all the water used in the U.S. is used for growing crops to feed livestock.

  • One third of the value of all raw materials used in the U.S. are used in the production of food for livestock.

  • Animals raised for food in the U.S. produce 87,000 pounds of excrement per second, polluting waterways. Slaughterhouses and feedlots are responsible for more water pollution than all other industrial and household sources combined. The whole livestock industry is responsible for more than half of all water pollution.

  • The need for cheaper grazing land for cattle and cheaper soybeans for chicken feed is one of the main reasons rainforests are being destroyed. Every second, another acre of rainforest is lost forever. Its usefulness for agriculture is very quickly exhausted.

  • The U.S. imports 300 million pounds of meat every year from Central and South America.

  • In Central America, 75% of the children under 5 are undernourished.

  • An acre of land can be used to produce 250 pounds of beef or 40,000 pounds of potatoes. The same land used for growing soybeans can provide sustenance 9 times longer than if used for animals. 87% of U.S. agricultural land is devoted to the livestock industry.

  • In the U.S., 3 million animals every hour are killed for food, more than 26 billion animals every year.

About calcium and animal protein (from the UK Vegan Society; see also the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine): "A high-protein diet, especially derived from animal foods, causes calcium loss in the body. The higher sulphur-to-calcium ratio of meat increases calcium excretion, and a diet rich in meat can cause bone demineralisation. A report published in 1988(1) comparing the amounts of calcium excreted in the urine of 15 subjects showed that the animal-protein diet caused greater loss of bone calcium in the urine (150mg/day) than the all-vegetable-protein diet (103mg/day). These findings suggest that diets providing vegetable rather than animal protein may actually protect against bone loss and hence osteoporosis. In one study adults on a low-protein diet were in calcium balance regardless of whether calcium intake was 500mg, 800mg or 1400mg a day.(2) Interestingly, the American Dietetic Association, in its 1993 policy statement on vegetable diets, pointed out that the calcium intakes recommended in the USA were increased specifically to offset calcium losses caused by the typically high protein consumption in that country."
(1) Breslau NA, Brinkley L, Hill KD, Pak, CYC. Relationship of animal-protein-rich diet to kidney-stone formation and calcium metabolism. J Clin End. 1988;66:140-146.
(2) Linkswiler HM, Zemel MB, Hegsted M, Schuette S. Protein-induced hypercalcuria. Fed Proc. 1981;40:880-883.

About dairy: Beef cows face only an untimely end (ignoring the abomination of feedlots). Dairy cows face that as well, but must first endure much more: annual forced pregnancy, separation from their calves, and milking (by machine) 2-3 times a day, as Vivien Straus of Straus Family Creamery, a small organic dairy farm in California, attests (in a letter forwarded to the Veg-NYC mailing list) . . .

"Once cows are no longer being milked (for reasons of age, lower production, inability to get pregnant, chronic illness or infection, etc.) we sell them to the auction house. We assume that they are bought for beef [and rendering].

"I believe 20-40% of beef comes from "retired" dairy cows. ...

"We do not raise any veal. We keep the female calves and sell the males at the auction -- where someone else may raise them for beef or veal. ...

"Our cows stay in the herd till they are an average age of 6 or 7. [The natural life span of a cow is 20-25 years.]

"And yes, on our dairy, just like other dairies, cows are bred about once every 13 months. they usually get 2 months rest before being impregnated again."