Is tofu that environmentally friendly as we thought?
Tofu has its origins in ancient China and since the second half of the twentieth century has become the most common substitute for meat and a source of protein for those who do not eat meat. It occupies an important place in the vegetarian diet due to its high protein content and taste qualities. However, is everything so smooth here?
Tofu – safe or dangerous?
Meat was recognized as the most environmentally hazardous food, but some farmers said tofu could be even more dangerous.
Dr. Graham McAuliffe announced at a meeting of the National Farmers Union that eating chicken, pork and beef have less effect on the planet than tofu according to his unpublished research.
Although his research is only theoretical proof of this concept, it may affect the role of tofu as a safe substitute for meat.
He says that the production of beans and ground peas has incomparably less effect on the planet. But it must be taken into account that tofu is a factory product that requires a significant amount of energy and resources to produce. This also means that the protein contained in tofu is less digestible than animal protein in meat products. This will only lead to increased consumption.
Given these facts, the use of tofu will have an increased effect on global warming
It was not the first time that tofu was found to be environmentally dangerous. Soy-containing products were marked as environmentally hazardous by the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) in 2010. The inclusion of such products in the daily diet will lead to dependence on exported plant resources.
Vegetarian dieters were advised to eat beans and lentils as well as chickpea, in order to consume the protein level a person needs instead of eating soy-containing products. Such foods are much safer for the environment than meat and plant foods.
However, the transition to a full vegetarian diet is the most significant and effective step that a person can take individually to help the environment and the planet.
This transition can reduce the carbon footprint of each person’s diet by 73 percent.
It is important to take into account that if all people switch to a plant diet without including factory-made products, the use of land for agriculture will be reduced by almost four times.
This will free most of the land surface for the restoration of nature and wildlands. Perhaps, such a reversal will allow to revive the population of many species of wild animals and partially fix human damage to the environment before it is too late.