Fact check

The meat consumption of the Swiss population in 2014 and 2015 was 111 grams per day and per capita, more than double what is recommended.

The Swiss Society for Nutrition (SGE) recommends consuming a maximum of two to three portions of meat of 100 to 120 grams per week. Veggieday will reduce meat consumption in Switzerland and encourage young people and adults to think about their own meat consumption.

For the climate

The production of animal-based food generates more greenhouse gases than the entire global traffic!

Deforestation of rainforests
On the agricultural land needed to produce one kilogramme of meat, 200 kilogrammes of tomatoes or 160 kilogrammes of potatoes could be harvested in the same time period. To gain more land area, rainforests are cleared, mainly for pasture or fodder cultivation.

Food waste
To produce one kilogram of meat, 7 to 16 kilograms of grain or soybeans are needed. If this grain was fed to people directly without going through animals, there would be enough food for everyone.

Less water consumption
With the amount of water needed to produce one kilogram of beef (15,500 litres), one could take a shower every day for a whole year.

Less greenhouse gases
According to the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), meat production causes more greenhouse gases than all global traffic. Many experts see dietary change as the most important factor in combatting climate change.

For health

High meat consumption poses health risks such as cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancer. In Switzerland, cardiovascular disease is the most common cause of death and cancer is the most common cause of premature mortality.

Societal disease
Diseases of civilisation such as cardiovascular disease and certain types of cancer are promoted by the consumption of meat. The World Health Organisation (WHO) classifies processed and red meat as cancer-promoting. High consumption (50 grams per day or more) increases mortality and the risk of colon cancer as well as cardiovascular disease.

Zoonoses are diseases that are transmitted from animals to humans. These include, for example, infections with Campylobacter or Salmonella. Factory farming leads to the clearing of rainforests. As a result, many wild animals lose their habitat and come into contact with humans more often.

Antibiotics are a standard procedure in factory farming. This leads to increased antibiotic resistance and antibiotics become ineffective. This can lead to fatal diseases in humans, as infections that are normally easy to treat no longer respond to antibiotics.

If we change our eating habits and consume less meat, the risk of societal diseases, pandemics and antibiotic resistance can be reduced.

For the animals

Every year, 2.5 million pigs, 404’000 cattle, 211’000 calves and 72 million chickens are killed in Switzerland.

Animal-friendly husbandry is impossible – over 75 million so-called “production animals” are slaughtered in Switzerland every year. To satisfy the hunger for meat, another 15 million animals are imported from abroad. With this amount, no consideration can be given to the specific needs of the individual animals. 98 percent of the fish and crustaceans consumed in Switzerland are imported.

The limits of indoor husbandry
To avoid injuries in factory farming, animals are mutilated for their own protection. Pigs often have their teeth clipped, cows have their horns burnt out and chickens have their beaks trimmed.

Lifelong exploitation
All “farm animals” reach only a fraction of their natural life expectancy. During this time, the animals are exploited to the point of exhaustion: hens lay up to 300 eggs per year, dairy cows produce 7’000 kilograms of milk and pigs are fattened to a weight of over 100 kilograms in 6 months.

Painful slaughter
Regardless of whether they come from conventional or organic farms, all animals are killed alike. Several thousand animals are delivered to large slaughterhouses every day. There is no time to check if stunning was successful. Hundreds of thousands of animals are therefore cut up while fully conscious.

Take the step towards climate protection with your canteen - with Veggieday.

Bettina Huber
Campaign Manager at Swissveg
T 071 477 33 77