Dietary change

Dietary change is seen as a way to reduce animal suffering, especially in factory farms, by reducing one’s consumption of animal products (Wildeford 2013).products.[1]

Besides its direct impact on food production, going vegetarian or vegan can also encourage others to make similar choices, and ultimately help change social norms (Tomasik 2006).norms.[2] For this reason, many members of the effective altruism community advocate a vegan or vegetarian diet, while some focus on reducing consumption of specific foods associated with most animal deaths or suffering (Galef 2011; Tomasik 2007).suffering.[3][4]

However, other members of the community have argued that reducing or eliminating animal products has monetary, attentional, and productivity costs, and that, after accounting for these costs, dietary change may not be a cost-effective intervention for those concerned about animal welfare (Lewis 2015).welfare.[5]

BibliographyFurther reading

Galef, Julia (2011) Want to kill fewer animals? Give up eggs, Scientific American Guest Blog, August 11.
Argues that people concerned about animals should eschew eggs rather than meat or other animal products.

Lewis, Gregory (2015) Don’t sweat diet?, Effective Altruism Forum, October 22.
An argument that dietary change is not an efficient way to reduce suffering.

  1. ^

    Wildeford, Peter (2013) Why eat less meat?, Everyday Utilitarian, June 6.

  2. ^

    Tomasik, Brian (2006) Does vegetarianism make a difference?, Essays on Reducing Suffering.

  3. ^

    Galef, Julia (2011) Want to kill fewer animals? Give up eggs, Scientific American Guest Blog, August 11.

  4. ^

    Tomasik, Brian (2007) How much direct suffering is caused by various animal foods?, Essays on Reducing Suffering.

  5. ^

    Lewis, Gregory (2015) Don’t sweat diet?, Effective Altruism Forum, October 22.