On Friday, October 9, the World Wildlife Fund (WWF) released a report detailing how the world can meet the nutritional needs of everybody without destroying our planet. The report, which mainly focuses on plant-based diets, explores the possibility of feeding the entire world while conserving nature and restoring the lost beauty of Earth. Titled The Restorative Power of Planet-Based Diets, the report explores the power of reducing meat and dairy intake in favor of plants. It also takes a specific focus on certain geographical reasons and offers custom solutions based on each country.
Although the report has been prepared with a global focus, special attention is given to the U.S., as it is one of the most-polluting countries due to lifestyle and food choices. The report tries to explore some ways that the U.S. can change its food intake to do its part in preserving the planet.
“The U.S. food system is one of the most important levers we have for solving climate and biodiversity crises, and what we eat and how much we consume matters. Even simple changes to our diets, like eating in line with National Dietary Guidelines, would take us a long way toward positive outcomes for both human health and the environment,” said Melissa D. Ho, senior vice president of freshwater and food for WWF. “If you can combine these efforts with others — a shift to regenerative and resilient agricultural systems, a less wasteful supply chain, and policies that incentivize producing food with human nutrition and planetary-health at the forefront — we will see positive impacts for people and the planet at a global scale.”
WWF has also released an online tool to help users estimate the impact their dietary changes could have globally. According to Brent Loken, global food lead scientist at WWF, the current world population is becoming a burden on our limited resources. But Loken believes it is possible to feed the entire world without jeopardizing our ecosystems.
“Taking a look at our food system today and seeing hunger, inequity, and environmental devastation, you might think it’s simply impossible to feed 8-10 billion people without destroying the planet,” Loken explained. “But that’s not the case; in fact, the opposite is true. Not only can we feed the entire population of Earth, we can do it in a way that improves human health globally and allows nature to recover from the damage we’ve caused.”
Image via Rita E.