Conscious Eating

Building a Healthy
and Sustainable World

BE PART OF THE CHANGE!

A programme of Mercy For Animals India

THE IMPLEMENTATION OF THIS PROGRAMME BY PARTICIPATING INSTITUTIONS WILL DELIVER THE FOLLOWING BENEFITS EACH YEAR:

>10 MILLION

meals impacted

>6,500 HECTARES

of land preserved (equivalent to more than 6,500 regulation football fields)

>100 MILLION

litres of water saved (equivalent to more than 1.8 million average showers)

>21 Million

tonnes of CO2 emissions prevented (equivalent to a car driving back and forth between New Delhi and Bangalore about 40,000 times)

Why?

According to renowned health organisations, low consumption of fruits, grains, and vegetables and high consumption of animal products heightens the risk of various diseases, such as obesity, diabetes, and cancer, and is directly related to serious environmental problems, including deforestation and excessive water use.

According to the United Nations, the livestock sector represents 14.5 percent of all human-induced greenhouse gas emissions. Researchers from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, have also calculated that methane emissions from Indian livestock were 15.3 million tonnes in 2012. Methane is a potent greenhouse gas, so emissions from India’s large livestock population have a significant impact on global climate change.

Moreover, our current system of food production is inefficient, as a lot of calories are being fed to livestock instead of directly to humans. As a result, world hunger is constantly rising, and according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, India is amongst the worst affected, having been ranked 103 out of 119 countries on the Global Hunger Index.

With these problems in mind, countless institutions in India and around the world, in partnership with programmes such as Conscious Eating India, and following the guidelines of organisations such as the U.N., have implemented new food policies to boost consumption of plant-based foods and reduce consumption of animal products.

Take a look at some of the key benefits of this change!

Child with Fruit

HEALTH

Lower intake of saturated fat

Reduced cholesterol levels

Lower risk of developing several types of cancer

Lower rates of hypertension

Lower rates of obesity

SUSTAINABILITY

Reducing greenhouse gas emissions

Reducing impact on biodiversity

Conserving water

Decreasing deforestation

Supporting fairer forms of production

WORLD HUNGER

Stemming the rise of world hunger

Improving India’s rank on the Global Hunger Index

Using resources efficiently

Feeding grain for livestock directly to people

Helping feed 3.5 billion more people globally

Avocado Toast

SUPPORT FOR CHANGE

Maneka Gandhi

“One kg of meat requires 11 kgs of food grain to be fed to the animals, and one animal requires 60,000 litres of water in its lifetime. This is a huge burden on the environment which is not sustainable.”

Maneka GandhiUnion Minister for Women and Child Development, Government of India
WWF U.K.

“In a world where more and more people adopt a Western diet—one that’s high in meat, dairy and processed food—producing crops to feed our livestock is putting an enormous strain on our natural resources and is a driving force behind wide-scale biodiversity loss.”

WWF U.K.Appetite for Destruction
Harvard Health

“If you’re striving for a long, healthy life, getting your protein from beans, nuts, and grains is a better bet than getting it from meat or eggs, new research finds.”

Harvard Health
Greenpeace

“A 50% reduction in meat and dairy production by 2050 relative to current levels will result in reducing GHG emissions from the agriculture sector by 64% compared to projected emissions under the 2050 baseline trajectories.”

GreenpeaceLess Is More: Reducing Meat and Dairy for a Healthier Life and Planet

See Who’s Already on Board

INDIA

GERMAN INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL, CHENNAI, GOES 100 PERCENT PLANT-BASED

The German International School in Chennai, India, has gone completely plant-based from August 2017. One of the primary reasons for the school’s transition was to reduce human impact on the environment. The school stated: “Our meal plan in GISC is creating a great impact by helping children learn ethical and sustainable eating habits. Our Chef is improving children’s fruit and vegetable consumption by introducing their sensory nerves to varied delicacies.”

VIJAYAN INTERNATIONAL SCHOOL CUTS DAIRY CONSUMPTION BY ABOUT 50 PERCENT

Vijaya International School, Agra, partnered with international NGO Vegan Outreach to reduce the use of dairy products in their meals by 50 percent. The students will also be served dairy-free milk beverages once a week.

CO-WORKING COMPANY WEWORK GOES VEGETARIAN GLOBALLY, CITING ENVIRONMENTAL CONCERNS

The $20 billion startup WeWork, with over 20 co-working spaces in India, has gone completely vegetarian. WeWork co-founder Miguel McKelvey said the company was eliminating meat for environmental reasons: “New research indicates that avoiding meat is one of the biggest things an individual can do to reduce their personal environmental impact, even more than switching to a hybrid car.”

GLOBAL

MAJOR NORTH AMERICAN CITIES AND SCHOOL DISTRICTS JOIN THE GLOBAL MOVEMENT TO REDUCE MEAT CONSUMPTION

In 2012 Los Angeles joined Washington, DC, San Francisco, and Vancouver in passing a groundbreaking resolution urging institutions and citizens to cut back on meat consumption as a comprehensive health and sustainability measure. Los Angeles Unified School District, the second-largest school district in the U.S., serves over 700,000 meals per day and is just one of dozens of U.S. school districts committed to serving meat-free meals on Mondays.

BRAZIL’S LARGEST CITY IMPLEMENTS HISTORIC MEATLESS MONDAY PROGRAMME

The city of São Paulo, Brazil, has committed to a meat-reduction strategy across its entire public school system, which serves over 1 million meals to students per day. One day a week, schools substitute meat-based dishes with flavoursome, familiar meals packed with plant-based protein and other essential nutrients.

HONG KONG GOVERNMENT LAUNCHES EATSMART@SCHOOL CAMPAIGN

In 2006 a coalition of organisations and agencies, including the Education Bureau in Hong Kong, joined forces to launch the EatSmart@school campaign, citing diet’s role in preventing chronic diseases, including obesity, heart disease, cancer, and diabetes. Promoting increased fruit and vegetable consumption is a core component of the programme, whose nutritional guidelines also suggest a need to limit meat content in school lunches.

Chana Masala

WHO WE ARE

Responsible food choices are critical to maintaining good health and securing the planet’s future.

Conscious Eating India is a programme of Mercy For Animals, a nonprofit that promotes a healthy and sustainable food system. We work with chefs, nutritionists, and professionals in the food industry throughout India and around the globe to incorporate plant-based dishes into the menus of government institutions, schools, universities, and companies. By simply replacing 20 percent of meat and other animal products with healthy and delicious plant-based foods, you can save money for your institution, promote good health, and protect the environment for future generations.

HOW WE WORK

In accordance with national and international food guidelines, we recommend replacing at least 20 percent of animal products served in canteens, cafeterias, and restaurants like yours with healthy and nutritious plant-based options.

NO COST TO YOU

As a nonprofit advisory programme, we provide all consulting, training, and materials for you at no charge.

SPECIALISED TEAM

As a Conscious Eating India partner, you will have the support of nutritionists and chefs specialised in plant-based cuisine, with decades of expertise in menu planning, recipe creation, and training chefs.

COMMUNICATION

We provide your institution with informative materials that illustrate the environmental and health benefits of reduced consumption of animal products.

MEDIA

We have an in-house PR team that can work with you to obtain positive media coverage of your commitment to promoting health and sustainability.

SEAL

As a participating institution, you will receive a Conscious Eating certification, which will attest to your global leadership in promoting sustainable and healthy food choices.

JOIN US

DO YOU WANT TO IMPLEMENT THE CONSCIOUS EATING PROGRAMME IN YOUR INSTITUTION? DO YOU HAVE INSTITUTIONAL CONTACTS YOU CAN CONNECT US WITH? FILL IN THE FORM BELOW, AND WE WILL CONTACT YOU.

OUR TEAM

Alan Darer

ALAN DARER

Director of Food Policy

Alan Darer manages an international food-policy team working in Brazil, Mexico, the U.S., Canada, India, and Asia. As a global director, he is responsible for the strategic development and expansion of the Conscious Eating programme around the world. Alan understands that climate change and health are global issues but that effective changes happen locally.

HARSHDEEP SINGH

HARSHDEEP SINGH

Food Policy Specialist

Harshdeep Singh works closely with institutions as a food-policy specialist to help them achieve their health and sustainability goals. With a background in food law and public policy, Harshdeep has always focused on how governments and institutions can work collaboratively and creatively to improve public health and environmental outcomes. Having lived all across India, Harshdeep understands the importance of giving attention to regional diets while also working to ensure these diets are beneficial to our health and that of the planet.

BOARD OF ADVISORS

Dr. Nandita Shah

Dr Nandita Shah

Dr Nandita Shah is the founder of SHARAN, an organisation that uses food as medicine and helps thousands of people reverse lifestyle diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure, hypothyroidism, PCOD, autoimmune disorders, and cancer.

Dr Shah is author of the book Reversing Diabetes in 21 Days published by Penguin India. She received the prestigious Nari Shakti Award in 2016 from the president of India for her work in the field of health and nutrition.

Roshni Sanghvi

Roshni Sanghvi

Roshni Sanghvi is an expert in plant-based nutrition and fitness and a body-transformation specialist. She works with clients around the globe through her online training programme, helping them transition to a plant-based diet. Her motto is simple: To transform your body you need to make permanent lifestyle changes, which is only achievable when the food on your plate is not only nutritious but delicious.

Susmitha Subbaraju

Susmitha Subbaraju

Susmitha Subbaraju, aka Susmitha Veganosaurus, is the managing partner of Carrots, India’s first 100 percent ethical vegan restaurant, serving a wide variety of delicious dishes aimed at breaking all myths about vegan food. She has over a decade of experience training people, including chefs, in vegan cooking and baking. She is passionate about teaching, making recipe videos, creating ethical art, studying spirituality and alternative healing, and mentoring vegan women entrepreneurs.

Cynthia Schuck

Cynthia Schuck

Cynthia Schuck has a doctorate from Oxford University in evolutionary biology and a master’s degree in ecology. She was the co-founder and scientific director of Origem Scientifica (2005–2017), a consulting company in the field of global health and sustainability, providing data analysis in the life sciences. She’s a published author of over 50 peer-reviewed scientific articles, book chapters, and educational materials. Over the past four years, she has also conducted extensive analytical work on the environmental and public-health impacts of industrial animal agriculture.

RECENT MEDIA COVERAGE

“Avoiding meat and dairy products is the single biggest way to reduce your environmental impact on the planet, according to the scientists behind the most comprehensive analysis to date.”
“Vegan diets, which are rich in plant-based organic foods, may be better for the planet than one high in animal products, a study has found. Such diets include reduced consumption of animal products, which have a higher environmental impact than plant-based products. This is mainly due to the high energy requirements of livestock farming as well as the very large contribution of livestock to greenhouse gas emissions.”
“Ultimately, if people worldwide who heavily rely on meat switch to a more plant-based diet, they could potentially decrease food-related greenhouse-gas emissions by almost half by 2050.”
Dosa