Food system change vital to preserve Amazon, says ProVeg

The UN’s International Day of Forests takes place on 21 March every year

ProVeg is highlighting the link between meat consumption and deforestation to mark this year’s International Day of Forests

Food awareness organisation, ProVeg International, is marking this year’s International Day of Forests on 21 March by highlighting how changing the food system will help put the brakes on deforestation.

Cattle ranching is the main driver of deforestation in the Amazon rainforest, responsible for 70% – 80% of forest loss in the region (1) (2). Preventing further deforestation for the expansion of pasture lands can only come about by reducing the demand for the meat that ranching produces to feed into the global meat supply chain.

“Reducing meat consumption and shifting to more plant-based diets will help to reduce the pressure on our planet, not just by reducing carbon emissions and the pollution of waterways, but also by reducing the need to deforest the Amazon rainforest for pasture land,” Jasmijn de Boo, Global CEO of ProVeg International, said.

“The Amazon plays an important role as a carbon sink, helping to regulate the Earth’s atmosphere, as well as being home to a huge array of species,” De Boo said. “We can not continue to stand by and watch the forests be destroyed simply to provide meat to countries that are often already overconsuming animal products,” she added.

According to a study by the Center for Development Research (ZEF) at the University of Bonn, people in industrialised countries need to eat at least 75 percent less meat to prevent ecosystem destruction and to be able to continue feed the global population in the future.



1. FAO. 2022. FRA 2020 Remote Sensing Survey. FAO Forestry Paper No. 186. Rome.

2. Cerri, C.E.P., C.C. Cerri, S.M.F. Maia, M.R. Cherubin, B.J. Feigl & R. Lal (2018): Reducing Amazon Deforestation through Agricultural Intensification in the Cerrado for Advancing Food Security and Mitigating Climate Change. Sustainability. 10, p.989

Notes for Editors

For media inquiries and interviews, email Peter Rixon at [email protected]

About ProVeg International

ProVeg International is a food awareness organisation with the mission to replace 50% of animal products globally with plant-based and cultivated foods by 2040. Our vision is a world where everyone chooses delicious and healthy food that is good for all humans, animals, and our planet.

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