Messages of support
Guy Watson, founder of organic veg box farmers Riverford
"As the son of a dairy and pig farmer, brother of a butcher, and an organic vegetable grower reliant on animal manures, keeping livestock has always been part of my life and my self-interest; but there is no escaping the conclusion that most of us in the west eat more meat, dairy and eggs than is remotely sustainable, healthy or fair to our planet and the less wealthy inhabitants we share it with. We must reduce individual consumption and look more carefully at how our food is produced to avoid the most damaging practices; in particular, and as a starting point, I would suggest that feeding grain and soya to ruminants (cows mostly) produces some of the most damaging and least healthy food you can buy; don’t eat anything other than grass-fed beef and dairy, and even then try to reduce what you eat."
You can read more about Riverford’s How Much Meat campaign at www.riverford.co.uk/how-much-meat
Rosie Boycott, Chair, London Food Board
"Food is at the heart of solutions to healthy and sustainable cities and tackling the twin challenges of climate change and poor nutrition. One of the simplest changes we can all make is to eat a bit less meat, for our health, for the health of our planet and for helping to feed the world more fairly. That's why I'm supporting the Eating Better alliance's work to engage policy makers, food businesses and all those who can make a difference to help us all eat more healthily and sustainably."
Chris Darwin, Great great grandson of Charles Darwin
"Unless something changes, over the next 100 years or so there will be a global mass extinction of species. What is causing this decline? On land, the primary cause is habitat destruction by the meat industry. In the seas, the primary cause is overfishing. But we can halt the mass extinction of species by eating less meat and fish. It is that simple. Good luck."
“I’ve always said we should be eating less meat, of higher quality, and the highest possible welfare standards. So I am delighted to support the Eating Better alliance which brings together leading NGOs who have done so much important work on these topics. As the world’s insatiable demand for cheap meat continues to ramp up, their message of reducing our overall meat consumption and committing to the highest welfare and environmental standards in the meat we do chose, is a no brainer. It’s right for our health, right for the planet and only fair to the millions of farm animals we raise for food.”
Tristram Stuart, food waste campaigner and founder of Feeding the 5000 & the Pig Idea
“Tackling what and how much we eat, and slashing food waste, is absolutely critical if we’re going to feed the world’s growing population without accelerating the mass extinction of wildlife on the planet. Humans are a terrestrial species and we depend on land to grow our food, but at present we are exploiting the land in ways that risk interfering with the planet’s ability to provide food for future generations. For too long government and the food industry have hidden these issues behind glossy brands and policy-free jargon. Eating Better brings us an alliance of organisations seeking to entice us to fill our stomachs without costing the earth, by boldly addressing the issues including those often considered too unpalatable to conquer, such as eating less meat.”
Michael Pollan, Author of Cooked, The Food Rules & The Omnivore's Dilemma
"Eating Better is a pathbreaking initiative to help define what we mean by sustainable eating, one of the most pressing questions we face."
John Webster: Emeritus Professor of Animal Husbandry, Bristol University.
“I wish the Eating Better alliance well in its work to reduce overall meat consumption. Eating better means eating much less meat: much better for us and much better for the planet. Eating no meat is a good and healthy option for many individuals but no solution for the planet; not least because, world-wide, over 70% of farmed land is grassland. If, on grounds of animal welfare alone, I were to restrict myself to small quantities of one type of meat, it would be beef from suckler cows and calves at pasture. It is certainly much more welfare-friendly than cheese!”
Jonathon Porritt, Founder Director, Forum for the Future
“As a keen supporter of the ‘Eat Less Meat’ campaign, I warmly welcome the emergence of ‘Eating Better’ which brings together a brilliant consortium of supporting organisations. Timely, suitably focussed – and inspirational!”
Tim Lang, Professor of Food Policy, City University, London
“The Eating Better alliance is very welcome indeed. Everyone working on the food question knows that what consumers eat, how it’s produced and how much we eat is a crunch issue. Policy-makers, food industry, farmers, media, are all wary of the issue, since it means tackling a consumer culture that is out of control. At last here are organisations prepared to engage with this this vital issue. Let the debate and the mass behaviour change now rapidly follow. This has to be a high priority for the 21st century.”
Professor Mike Rayner, Nuffield Department of Population Health, University of Oxford
"Eating Better provides the opportunity to bring together the public health community with the sustainability sector to lobby for policies and practices that will help change people's eating habits for the benefit of their health and that of the planet."