Veganism, which is a completely plant-based diet, is on the rise, by some studies as much as 600% since 2014. Six-percent of Americans now identify as vegan. Some vegans even extend the practice to their clothing, eschewing not only leather and fur, but also cosmetics and accessories that do not meet “cruelty-free” standards.
One of the top reasons people give for going completely animal-free in their diet is the environment. Vegan activists point to the fact that one pound of hamburger requires 1,799 gallons of water not only for the cow itself, but for the grain and corn it eats. Added to that is the pollution created not only from animal waste (this can be extremely significant in large feedlot operations for poultry, hogs and beef) but the pesticides, fungicides and herbicides used to grow the food the animal eats.
Increasingly vegans point out that meat production “contributes to land and water degradation, biodiversity loss, acid rain, coral reef bleaching and deforestation.