The U.S. Department of Agriculture is preparing to release new dietary guidelines for Americans in the coming months. Updated every five years, these guidelines provide recommendations for how to eat healthfully, and have the potential to drastically shape how and what America eats.
And this year, there are major changes that could accelerate the move away from meat.
The Washington Post reports:
[T]he panel that advises the government is pushing for the recommendations to reflect what is healthy for the environment, too. Given the huge carbon footprint of meat production, making this change would almost certainly entail lowering the official, government-recommended intake of meat. …… Several international and government agencies, including the United Nations, have spelled out the meat industry’s massive footprint. And now the USDA could be next with new, government-backed dietary guidelines.
As you’d expect, the meat industry has responded with criticism, claiming that environmental concerns shouldn’t influence the government’s dietary guidelines, and even contesting meat’s environmental impact.
While many Americans are sure to dismiss the guidelines, they will still have a far-reaching effect on federal feeding programs, including school lunches.
If finalized without changes, the new recommendations would not only profoundly affect the health of Americans and the sustainability of our food supply, but would also help alleviate the suffering of countless farmed animals who are abused and neglected on modern farms.
For more information on adopting a healthy and humane vegan diet, check out ChooseVeg.com.