WASTE OF FOODSTUFF
During the transformation from plant into animal protein a lot of nutritious matter is wasted…
Inefficient 'protein conversion'
- 1 kilo of beef (liveweight) requires 7 kg of high-protein feedstuffs;
- 4 kg of grain fed to pigs produce 1 kg of pork liveweight;
- in six weeks, a broiler chick needs just over 2 kg of feed to achieve 1 kg liveweight.
- globally, some 670 million tons of cereals are used as livestock feed each year. This represents just over 1/3 of total world cereal use (36.9% in 2003-2004, according to the World Resources Institute);
- 40% of cereals are fed to livestock in the United States whereas only 14% are fed in Africa;*
- grain used for feed in China jumped more than fivefold in the past two decades. Since 1960, the share of Chinese grain going to livestock tripled from 8% to 26%. In Mexico, the share jumped from 5% to 45% over the same period, and in Egypt, from 3 to 31%. Even in Thailand, where meat intake remains low, the share of grain fed to livestock surged from less than 1% in 1960 to 30% in 1997;
- each kilo of meat represents several kilos of grain, either corn or wheat, that could be consumed directly by humans. Thanks to this artificial extension of the food-chain, among other things, we loose: 90% protein; 99% carbohydrates; 100% fibre;
- moreover, only a small portion of the body of a slaughtered animal is utilised: 35% of the weight of a cow; 39% of a calf (without bones).
* Data from FAOSTAT.