Life is booming on planet Earth: in fact, world population is set to hit over 9 billion by 2050. But with it will grow the need to feed the masses – and, as seen in this infographic from the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, so will the unsustainable consumption of meat.
As noted in the New York Times, using the “starkest language it has ever used,” the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has warranted its most urgent and frightening warning yet regarding our food production and supply regarding its contribution to global emissions.
Bill Gates, who recently helped fund Impossible Food’s new all plant-based veggie burger-that-bleeds, agrees: “Raising meat takes a great deal of land and water and has a substantial environmental impact. Put simply, there’s no way to produce enough meat for 9 billion people.”
And a new exhibit at the National Geographic Museum in Washington D.C. called FOOD: Our Global Kitchen (running through February 2015) explores the magnitude of this food system problem interactively – a massive indicator that our broken food system is on everyone’s mind, and needs to be re-invented.
Thankfully, scientists and companies are already working hard on a sustainable alternative to the devastating course of meat production now in place worldwide. Companies like Beyond Meat and Hampton Creek Foods have created such incredible plant-based meat and egg alternatives that they have even fooled the likes of New York Times writer Mark Bittman.
According to recent food research, omnivores are eating up a majority of meat alternatives for the first time in history – showing their support for global healing by changing what they put on their plates. Huge international recognition of this plant-based movement from companies like Target, who recently created their own plant-based Simply Balanced line of cruelty-free meat, also speaks to the mainstream push for sustainable, delicious, compassionate food options.
As we march into the future, we must consider our role in the evolution of the food system – currently one of the most destructive forces on planet Earth.