From The Body: A Guide for Occupants:
Foodborne illness is America’s secret epidemic. Every year three thousand people, the equivalent of a small town, die of food poisoning in the United States, and around 130,000 are hospitalized.
An investigation by the Food and Drug Administration in 2016 found that 84 percent of chicken breasts contained intestinal E. coli. According to a USDA study, about a quarter of all chicken pieces sold in stores are contaminated with salmonella.
This Atlantic article not only makes the case for plant-based meat but for smarter real-world-based advocacy like One Step's harm-reduction efforts.
"For the past 50 years, Americans have responded to the case against eating animals mostly by eating more animals.
"They have heard again and again about the moral and ecological costs of eating meat—from philosophers like Peter Singer and polemicists like Jonathan Safran Foer; from viral documentary footage of slaughterhouses and tortured poultry; from activist organizations like PETA and scientific reports on the fossil-fuel cost of producing a medallion of beef.
"The collective sum of all these books and films and eco–guilt trips has made little difference. The share of Americans who call themselves vegan or vegetarian hasn’t increased in the past 20 years. In the 1970s, the typical American ate about 120 pounds of meat each year. In the 1990s, she ate about 130 pounds annually. Today, she eats more than 140 pounds a year, or about 2.5 pounds of meat every week—a record high, according to government estimates.
"The case against eating meat is a case for the mass renunciation of real human pleasure. (Yes, this is coming from someone who delights in little more than a well-cooked ribeye.) Like the case for reducing our carbon footprint, the vegan argument requires that the large majority of people sacrifice their lifestyle for outcomes that are often invisible to them as individuals. A cultural or moral revolution designed around the elimination of pleasurable options and the restriction of individual human choice is a hard sell, particularly in a country like the U.S., where materialist choice has been elevated to a kind of civic religion."
You support One Step to save animals. But what do the numbers say?
We had previously explored this question but wanted to update the calculations, given all the work we have been doing to understand and optimize how much impact your dollars have.
Every day, our various landing page ads (like the one below) are seen by tens of thousands of individuals who are targeted for having some interest in animals (dogs, cats, horses, etc.). People can then click through to watch the video.
To be highly conservative in our estimates of impact, we assume each view of the ad and each view of the video have absolutely no impact. Instead, we assume that only individuals who see an ad and watch the video and click to download the Guide actually make any change. Assume that they react, on average, the way our poll respondents do, and assume they maintain that change for only for an average of five years.
With all those conservative assumptions, it comes down to:
4.5¢ per chicken saved.
Or more than 2,000 chickens saved per $100 contributed. Given how people say they react to One Step's message, your $100 also saves over 750 vertebrate fish (as per Harish's estimates), and more than 80 layer hens (as well as turkeys, pigs, and cows).
You can change the assumptions all you like, but given the low cost per person downloading the Guide and the survey results, it is extremely cost-effective to save animals via contributions to One Step's work.
Given that every dollar you donate is truly doubled, you actually save many more animals, whatever assumptions you choose.
We greatly appreciate that you choose to make our work part of how you help animals.
You can know we will continue to do our best to give you the greatest return on your donations every day.
We ran a survey via Survey Monkey asking this question:
If One Step's message has ever influenced you or someone you know, what is your (or their) current consumption of the following products?
Here are the results, with each number being the percentage of respondents who gave each answer (e.g., 71% said that they now eat much less or no red meat, 51% saying they eat many more plant-based meals, etc.)::
For everyone who thinks that eating chickens is the best choice from the environment, this Life Cycle Assessment shows MorningStar's plant-based chicken has the following advantages over slaughtered chicken:
Note that MorningStar is phasing eggs out of all their products.
Several supporters have asked if we know how people react to One Step for Animals' harm reduction message. Specifically, they are curious if people shift to other types of meat or choose meat-free meals instead. We ran an online poll and found:
If you or someone you know had a reaction to One Step's message, what was it? Thanks!
4% Ate more red meat.
96% Ate more meat-free meals.
The number of animals being killed and factory farmed goes up when people choose to eat chicken meat.
This is why One Step For Animals advocates for everyone to examine their choices and cut chickens out of their diet. We carefully look at numbers and think about the consequences of our acts.
Take a look at this staggering account published in the Independent:
"The biggest mega-farms house more than a million chickens, 20,000 pigs or 2,000 cattle."
Everyone is welcome to take one step and reduce suffering. Intensive farming is accelerating climate change, driving species loss, emitting damaging slurry and nitrates, and causing large-scale animal suffering. Choosing chicken is not green and it is a cruel choice. It is alas too easy to dismiss this claim of cruelty because “they’re just birds” but this would mean ignoring the increasing amount of scientific evidence that birds think, feel and suffer. For more on this, we suggest this excellent piece from The Atlantic, published in March 2019.
This is the reality of chicken farming in Australia, much like everywhere else: thousands of animals being abused.
It takes more than 200 chickens to produce the same number of meals as one cow. Chickens are typically the most mistreated animals in the industry. Plant-based chicken meat is easy to find in our supermarkets and tastes awesome. Please take ONE STEP for the animals and choose animal friendly options.
The National Chicken Council's newly-released report (here) is very interesting. A few highlights:
This indicates that One Step's message can actually reach and influence people. Thanks for your support of this work!
As long-time One Step members know, the average person in the United States is now eating more animals than ever before in history.
But what about other countries? Not just developing countries like China and India (where consumption of animals is soaring) but countries with significant vegan movements?
Israel has been called "the first vegan country" for years. However, looking at the actual numbers shows that the average person in Israel eats more chickens than anyone else in the world.
The United Kingdom is also touted as a huge vegan success story. However, our friend Matthew Glover (the brains behind Veganuary) just sent us the sobering chart above.
As you can see here, 2018 is even worse:
If you have read One Step's reasoning, you know we care only about reducing suffering as much as possible. It is facts like these – not just in the U.S. or China, but also Israel and the UK – that lead us to reject the standard advocacy and focus instead on a message that can actually impact suffering.
As always, thanks so much for being a part of this advocacy. We look forward to working with you going forward.