Feeding animals home-grown instead of imported feed could save rainforest and wildlife. Half of the animal feed currently imported from South America could be replaced with home-grown crops. This would save an area of forest the size of the Yorkshire Dales each year.
Pastures New is a new report by Friends of the Earth - based on research by the Royal Agricultural College. It highlights how soy-based feeds could be replaced with home-grown peas, beans and sunflowers, as well as grazing on grass and clover.
The report was launched in Parliament where MPs were asked to help farmers graze animals and feed them a home-grown diet by:
- Rewarding green farming practices.
- Ensuring farmers get a fair deal from supermarkets.
- Promoting the health and environmental benefits of lower-meat diets
Livestock farming is one of the most significant contributors to global environmental damage - yet in the UK we are doing little about it. This report draws on new research that shows the barriers to replacing soy are not so much the nutritional needs of animal or what can be grown in the UK - but a lack of policy and market incentives for farmers to change.
Sandra Bell, Senior Food Campaigner, at Friends of the Earth said, “Many people choose British milk and meat without realising that the animals in our farms munch on feed produced by destroying wildlife and rainforests in South America”
In July Friends of the Earth launched the new MOOvement to urge MPs to back rainforest-free food. They will be voting on the Sustainable Livestock Bill this autumn and we want them to choose planet-friendly food and farming.
You can get involved by signing the on-line petition at: www.foe.co.uk/what_we_do/join_moovement_24437.html
You can find out more by visiting: www.jointheMOOvement.com