The Consequences of Eating Meat

Number of people worldwide who will die of starvation this year: 60 million. Number of people who could be adequately fed with the grain saved if Americans reduced their intake of meat by 10 perc.: 60 million.

Human beings in America: 243 million. Number of people who could be fed with grain and soybeans now eaten by U.S. livestock: 1.3 billion. How frequently a child starves to death: every 2 seconds.

Percentage of corn grown in the U.S. eaten by people: 20. Percentage of corn grown in the U.S. eaten by livestock: 80. Percentage of oats grown in the U.S. eaten by livestock: 95. Percentage of protein waste by cycling grain through livestock: 99.

Pounds of potatoes that can be grown on an acre: 20.OOO. Pounds of beef produced on an acre: 165. Percentage of U.S. farmland devoted to beef production: 56. Pounds of grain and soybeans needed to produce a pound of beef: 16.

Cause of global warming: greenhouse effect Primary cause of greenhouse effect: carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels. Fossil fuels needed to produce a meat-centered diet vs. a meat-free diet: 50 times more.

Percentage of U.S. topsoil lost to date: 75. Percentage of U.S. topsoil loss directly related to livestock raising: 85. Number of acres of U.S. forest cleared for cropland to produce meat-centered diet: 260 million.

Amount of meat U.S. imports annually from Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Panama: 200 million pounds. Average per capita meat consumption in Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras and Panama: less than eaten by average U.S. housecat.

Area of tropical rainforest consumed in every 1/4 pound hamburger: 55 sq.ft. Current rate of species extinction due to destruction of tropical rainforests for meat grazing and other uses: 1.000 per year.

Increased risk of breast cancer for women who eat meat 4 times a week vs. less than once a week: 4 times. For women who eat eggs daily vs. less than once a week: 3 times.

Increased risk of fatal ovarian cancer for women who eat eggs 3 or more times a week vs. less than once a week: 3 times.

Increased risk of fatal prostate cancer for men who eat meat daily vs. sparingly or not at all: 3.6 times.

Use of more than half of all water used for all purposes in the U.S.: livestock portion. Amount of water used in production of the average steer: sufficient to float a destroyer.

Gallons of water needed to produce a pound of wheat: 25. Gallons of water needed to produce a pound of meat: 2.500.

Cost of common hamburger if water used by meat industry was not subsidized by the U.S. taxpayer: 35 dollars a pound. Current cost of pound of protein from beefsteak, if water was no longer subsidized: 89 dollars.

Years the world's known oil reserves would last if every human ate a meat-centered diet: 13. Years they would last if human beings no longer ate meat: 260.

Barrels of oil imported into U.S. daily: 6.8 million. Percentage of fossil fuel returned as food energy by most efficient factory farming of meat: 34.5. Percentage returned from least efficient plant food: 32.8. Percentage of raw materials consumed by U.S. to produce present meat-centered diet: 33.

Number of U.S. medical schools: 125. Number requiring a course in nutrition: 30. Nutrition training received by average U.S. physician during four years in medical school: 25 hours. 20, 1989)

Most common cause of death in U.S.: heart attack. How frequently a heart attack kills in U.S.: every 45 seconds. Average U.S. man's risk of death from heart attack: 50 perc. Risk for average U.S. man who avoids the meat-centered diet: 15 perc.

Meat industry claims you should not be concerned about your blood cholesterol if it is: normal. Your risk of dying of a disease caused by clogged arteries if your blood cholesterol is 'normal': over 50 perc.

Percentage of U.S. antibiotics fed to livestock: 55. Percentage of staphylococci infections resistant to penicillin in 1960: 13. Percentage resistant in 1988: 91.

Response of European Economic Community to routine feeding of antibiotics to livestock: ban. Response of U.S. meat and pharmaceutical industries to routine feeding of antibiotics to livestock: full and complete support.

Percentage of pesticide residues in the U.S. diet supplied by grains: 1. Percentage of pesticide residues in the U.S. diet supplied by fruits: 4. Percentage of pesticide residues in the U.S. diet suppl. by dairy products: 23. Percentage of pesticide residues in the U.S. diet supplied by meat: 55. Pesticide contamination of breast milk from meat-eating mothers vs. non meat-eating: 35 times higher.

What USDA tells us: meat is inspected. Percentage of slaughtered animals inspected for residues of toxin chemicals including dioxin and DDT: less than 0.00004.

Number of animals killed for meat per hour in U.S.: 500.000. Occupation with highest turnover rate in U.S.: slaughterhouse worker. Occupation with highest rate of on-the-job injury in U.S: slaughterhouse worker. Cost to render animal unconscious with captive bolt pistol before slaughter.: 1 cent. Reason given by meat industry for non using that pistol: too expensive.






As custodians of the planet it is our responsibility to deal with all species with kindness, love and compassion. That these animals suffer through human cruelty is beyond understanding. Please help to stop this madness.

Richard Gere