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From farm to plate, one in four animals raised on factory farms are wasted

Vox: “Almost 1 in every 4 animals raised on a factory farm never actually makes it to your plate. Instead, they die for nothing. That’s according to a study published earlier this month in the journal Sustainable Production and Consumption that sheds new light on the global toll of food waste on animals. Researchers at Leiden University in the Netherlands found that in 2019, 18 billion of the 75 billion pigs, chickens, turkeys, cows, goats, and sheep raised for food around the world were never eaten. The study counted animals wasted at any point in the supply chain: those who died prematurely on the farm or on the way to the slaughterhouse; wasted in processing; and by restaurants, grocers, and consumers. (The study, however, did not include wasted seafood, which would likely account for hundreds of billions of fish and shrimp.) A majority of the waste occurs in just 10 countries — most of them large and high- or middle-income nations, like China, the US, and Brazil. The researchers also noted how many animal lives were wasted per capita, a metric on which the US scores especially poorly: 7.1 animals wasted for each person. That’s about triple the global average of 2.4 animals per person.”


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