15% Of Kiwis Are Now Mostly Or Always Meat-free
The NZ Vegetarian Society is welcoming news that more Kiwis are ditching meat in favour of plant-based diets. According to Colmar Brunton's ‘Better Futures: 2020’ report, 15% of New Zealanders aged 18 and over are now always or mostly meat free.
Philip McKibbin, spokesperson for the NZ Vegetarian Society, says that this represents a significant shift toward vegetarianism:
'This is great news! Last year, the same report revealed that 10% of Kiwis were almost or always meat-free. This year, that figure has jumped to 15%, a 50% increase. It shows that more of us now recognise that what we eat has consequences not only for our health, but for other animals and the natural environment as well.'
In New Zealand, meat and dairy production are the leading causes of environmental degradation, and according to the Ministry for the Environment, agriculture accounts for almost 50% of our country's greenhouse gas emissions.
Mr McKibbin says it isn't surprising that New Zealanders are making positive changes to their diets:
'As Kiwis, we value our relationship with the natural environment, and we like to think that we care about others. Given how harmful meat is for both animals and the environment, it isn't at all surprising that more of us are choosing to avoid it. We applaud those New Zealanders who are taking responsibility for their actions and giving up meat in favour of a better world.'
According to the Better Futures report, 49% of New Zealanders agree that they need to change their diet to save our environment - which suggests that more people will soon transition to vegetarianism.
Mr McKibbin says the NZ Vegetarian Society is convinced the trend toward plant-based diets will continue.
'We believe it's only a matter of time before meat-eating becomes a thing of the past. I mean, it has to. Given the relationship between meat-eating and environmental degradation, Kiwis have to choose: between giving up meat or giving up on the planet.'
The NZ Vegetarian Society encourages anyone who is considering giving vegetarianism a go to sign up online for their 21-Day Plant-Based Challenge. You’ll receive tips and encouragement to help you get started on your veg journey.