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The UK should cut its meat and dairy consumption by 50 percent by 2030, MPs were told earlier this week.
The Eating Better alliance, which is made up of more than 60 organizations including Compassion in World Farming and the WWF, presented a report to politicians, businesses, and NGOs at Westminster.
According to the alliance, ‘Better by half: A roadmap to less and better meat and dairy’, provides ‘actions to help create the right environment for people to eat better for themselves and the planet’.
Changing eating habits
Eating Better says the case for action for ‘less and better meat and dairy is well evidenced’, citing the impact animal agriculture has on the planet.
“The value of diversifying diets to include more vegetables, wholegrains, nuts, seeds and pulses is clear. But it isn’t always easy for people to make good food choices. The Eating Better alliance are clear that this is a complex challenge which no one can achieve on their own,” it adds.
It has has identified 24 actions targeted at government, food service and retail, food producers and investors, saying that ‘providing the right environment’ will be more effective in getting people to change the way they eat, than ‘telling people what they can and can’t eat’.
“We know that where we live, and work plays a huge role in our health and wellbeing. Children from the poorest areas with the most unhealthy food environments are twice as likely to be obese as their wealthier counterparts,” Shirley Cramer, Chief Executive, Royal Society for Public Health said in a statement.
“It is vital that we have robust national and local policies in place to improve the environment so that the default food option is the healthy one. Only then will we begin to tackle our growing health inequalities.”
‘Eating more sustainably’
“The Eating Better alliance has been encouraged by recent announcements by the UK Government. They have laid out legislation for the UK to contribute net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 and announced an independent review to inform a National Food Strategy,” Simon Billing, Executive Director of Eating Better, added.
“The alliance is keen to see these commitments turn to action as there is a feeling that Government has lagged behind consumers, growers and food businesses for too long. They need to be at the table in creating the right environment for people to eat more sustainably.”