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Three views of the VSS Hunger Statue
The poster that accompanies the sculpture when it is exhibited.
Meat Consumption Contributes to World Hunger
Meat production is grossly wasteful of our Earth’s resources
While the cause of world hunger is multi-faceted , meat consumption is a contributing factor. This is because much Third World grain and other food is fed to animals (to produce cheaper meat to be eaten in developed countries), not to hungry Third World people. World hunger adds another weighty issue to the vegetarian cause.
- Worldwide, 100s of millions of people live with chronic hunger. More than a million people, many of them children, die of hunger-related causes each year. Most hunger-related deaths are due to chronic malnutrition.
- Much of the world’s food is fed to animals, so that more affluent people can eat meat. Worldwide, in 2004, about 50 billion land animals were eaten by humans.
- About 10 kg of food is fed to cows to produce 1 kg of beef. (The ratio of food to meat for other types of meat is less, but still represents major inefficiency.)
- The world’s cattle alone consume a quantity of food more than enough to feed the Earth’s entire human population.
- For example, more than 50% of the corn and oats grown in the US is fed to livestock, not to people.
- Much plant food grown in third world countries is sold to developed countries to produce cheaper meats.
- On the other hand, millions in the developed countries suffer from diseases related to over-consumption, often linked to meat eating, such as heart disease, stroke, hypertension and diabetes.
- Although world hunger is a complex, multi-faceted issue, the high demand for meat is a contributing factor.
- Meat consumption in much of the world is still on the rise. Modern animal farming is rapidly polluting and depleting our natural resources upon which all life depends.
- Greater demand for meat leads to more deforestation, more water pollution, more soil degradation, and, ultimately, more hunger.
- We can feed the world, improve our health and help preserve our fragile planet if we all move towards a plant-based diet.
- By eating less or no meat at each meal, we all can make a difference in the world.
To bring more attention to this tragedy, VSS has made a sculpture to bring a sense of reality to the suffering, which would otherwise be unseen by Singapore eyes.
This sculpture and the accompanying poster are being displayed at selected VSS events. If you have ideas for places, such as restaurants and schools, that would like to have a turn to display the sculpture and poster, please email us.
College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences (1997). Food Supply and the World's Population. CPSC121 - Principles of Field Crop Sciences. College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana-Champaign, Illinois, USA.
de Haan, C.; Steinfeld, H.; Blackburn, H. (1997). Livestock and the Environment. Finding a Balance. A study coordinated by the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations, the United States Agency for International Development and the World Bank. European Commission, Brussels, Belgium.
FAO (1997). Report of the World Food Summit (13-17 November 1996; Part One). Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), Rome, Italy.
FAO (1998). Food and Agriculture Organisation Statistical Databases (FAOSTAT). Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), Rome, Italy. Internet: http://apps.fao.org
FAO (2000). Food and Agriculture Organisation Statistical Databases (FAOSTAT). Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), Rome, Italy. Internet: http://apps.fao.org.
Halweil, B. (1998). United States Leads World Meat Stampede. Worldwatch Press Briefing on the Global Trends in Meat Consumption (July 2, 1998). Worldwatch Institute, NW Washington, Washington DC, USA.
Steinfeld, H.; de Haan, C.; Blackburn, H. (1997). Livestock - Environment Interactions. Issues and Options. A study coordinated by the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations, the United States Agency for International Development and the World Bank. European Commission, Brussels, Belgium.
Unicef (1998). The State of the World's Children 1998. Focus on Nutrition. United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), Geneva, Switzerland.