April 1 marks the official start of Earth Day chatter around the world, which makes it a great time to talk about the Because Animals’ mission to create slaughter-free pet food using cultured meat.
We won’t mince words: Animal agriculture is bad for the planet. It’s the leading cause of climate change, habitat destruction and the exploitation of fisheries, forests and other resources.
Did you know?
- Animal agriculture -- specifically, factory farming -- accounts for 18% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions, making it among the single largest contributors, which is a share higher than all modes of transport combined.
- Factory farming is the largest source of water pollution.
- Land used for animal feed, grazing and keeping farmed animals accounts for 41% of the United States (nearly 800 million acres). Less than 20% is used as crop lands.
- The crops grown to feed industrially-reared animals worldwide could feed an extra four billion people on the planet.
- And, in terms of pet food, more than a quarter of the environmental effects of the animal agriculture industry are directly attributable to the foods that Americans feed their cats and dogs.
- Intensive agriculture systems, which take up more space and resources than any other industry in the U.S., have stifled biodiversity of crops and animals and indirectly destroyed wildlife habitats.
Cultured meat has none of those problems
- Culture-grown meat has none of those problems because it is meat grown without raising or slaughtering animals. It is grown in a way that is similar to how tissue develops in an animal, except that cultured meat begins with a small collection of animal cells that are grown in a nutrient-rich environment outside the animal.
- What this means is no raising, housing, feeding or slaughtering of animals. And that ultimately means preserving precious resources such as water, land, electricity and time. See the chart below for the staggering numbers.
- Cultured meat has the same nutritional value and composition as animal-based meat. It is, in fact, meat. Though in contrast to traditional meat, our cultured meat is grown without the use of antibiotics or growth hormones; and without animal suffering and slaughter. And it doesn’t cause environmental damage.
- Cultured meat will also be free of disease, which is a significant point in light of the current Covid-19 situation. Intense, large-scale confinement of animals pose a public health threat by increasing the potential to spread emerging zoonotic diseases (either viral or bacterial) such as Covid-19, SARS, MERS, Avian flu, Swine flu and more, to humans.
Easing our reliance on animals in the food system will have wide-reaching benefits including a massive reduction to a very large ecological footprint. Now is the time to support this change. We can’t waste another minute.