A common argument against going vegan is that one person doesn’t really make a difference. Actually, one person can make a lot of difference!
In a lifetime, each of us will eat more than 7,000 animals so by choosing to stop today, a lot of lives are spared. It won’t save the animals who are in farms and slaughterhouses today, of course, but it is a simple rule of economics that when demand decreases so does supply.
Quite simply, as people buy fewer animal products, supermarkets and butchers will reduce their orders, and so fewer animals will be bred and killed.
While sparing the lives of thousands of animals is no small thing, our impact is magnified further because we are not going vegan all by ourselves. There are millions of us choosing to eat only animal-free foods and each of us influences others to enjoy meat-free meals, too.
We can see tangible changes in the farming industry specifically because people are going vegan. In the UK in 2016, sales of fresh meat fell by £328 million, fresh milk by £54 million and cheese by £73 million just in one year! Since then red meat sales have continued to fall. And the UK with its more than half a million vegans is not alone.
In the US, sales of meat have been declining for a decade, plant-based milk sales are worth $4.2 billion, and thinktank RethinkX predicts that both the beef and dairy industries will be defunct by 2030.
In Canada, meat consumption has been described as being ‘in a decades-long slump’ with 38 per cent of Canadians now saying they have reduced their meat consumption.
In Australia, which is the third-fastest growing vegan market in the world behind China and the United Arab Emirates, sales of dairy are in decline as young people turn their backs on cheese and cows’ milk. Now, 2.5 million Australians are either fully or almost vegetarian. And in Germany, 10 per cent of people are already meatless. Change is happening all around the world!
Alone, we spare the miserable suffering of thousands of animals, which is something extraordinary to be proud of, but together we are saving billions of animals, and every person’s contribution counts.
PAGE UPDATED NOVEMBER 2020