After Christmas and New Year’s Eve, festive dinners and lots of desserts, it’s now time to start the new year with good intentions. However, the problem with New Year’s Resolutions is that we lose interest after short period of time.
One easy New Year’s Resolution FOUR PAWS recommends, is to start off the year with a reduction of animal products like meat, dairy and eggs – as this make sense for three reasons: It’s beneficial for your own health, it helps the planet and the welfare of animals.
While environmentalists and physicians are increasingly pointing out the problems in the areas of climate change and health in connection to high meat and milk consumption, the ethical aspect is a focus of FOUR PAWS.
Everyone can contribute to the common good
Consuming a high amount of animal products negatively impacts animal welfare, the climate and our health. Ultimately, everything is connected and is influences each other. Thus, this should help us understand and get motivated to change certain dietary habits.
FOUR PAWS recommends the 3Rs principle: Reduce, Refine, and Replace.
- By reducing the amount of animal-based products like meat, dairy and eggs, less animals need to be raised, kept and slaughtered for food production.
- When animal-based products are bought, one should look at the origin and choose products from higher animal welfare standards.
- The most effective way to help animals is to replace animal-based products with plant-based alternatives as much as possible which is the most animal friendly option.
It is in the power of everyone to make a change
Do good for your own health, it helps also the planet and the welfare of animals.
Most farm animals are kept in intensive farming systems and are reproduced in mass quantities. The animals are crowded together, have little space and experience continuous stress. Antibiotics are administered prophylactically. Natural patterns of behavior can be lived only partially or not at all. In order to produce meat as much as possible within a short span of time, the animals are forcibly adapted to the system until they are eventually brought to the slaughterhouse when they are only a few months old.
The welfare of the animals is also affected within the intensive dairy industry. Most dairy cows do not experience open land or pastures during their entire lives. Many of them live in tethering for 365 days per year. Mothers and calves are being separated shortly after they are born without having the opportunity of bonding or suckling. Today´s milk production comes from cows that have been bred for high-performance. The exhausted dairy cows are often slaughtered just after the age of five, while their natural life expectancy can be over 20 years. The main reason for this is fertility problems and decrease of milk production.