A Guide to Eating Ethically and Sustainably



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Top view unhealthy food versus healthy food
(All facts founded by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition)

The hot topic of the year (well, the past decade) has been eating ethically and sustainably. Is it the impossible task? Can one really exist with the other? Or are we just reaching towards a pipe dream? We’re here to clear the fog and debunk a few myths surrounding ethical consumption. 

But first off…

1. What do we mean by sustainable eating? 

Sustainability is at the crux of humanity, the very thing that proves we as humans can be selfless and look out for future generations. In 2010 the FAO defined sustainable diets as “those diets with low environmental impacts which contribute to food and nutrition security and to healthy life for present and future generations.” 

2. How do I begin to eat sustainably? 

As you’ve probably heard, it’s become well know that a more plant-based diet can contribute significantly less harm to the environment than a more meat and dairy based diet. This is because the middle men (being the animals) require more land, food and water to be used in production than is needed to harvest crops. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition states, ‘Approximately half of all food-related greenhouse gas emissions are generated during farming. Farm-stage emissions include nitrous oxide and methane from livestock and carbon dioxide from agriculturally induced change in land use, especially deforestation.’ 

3. But surely not all plant-based foods are sustainable? 

Albeit, it’s true that not all plant-based foods are sustainable. Anything mass produced can be a bad idea. For example the argument over avocados and almond milk in that they use up a lot water and energy to be harvested. The good news is, that they take up a lot less energy than animal products but a great way to be as sustainable as possible is to make food from scratch. Buy a bag of oats, whizz them up with some water, strain and make some oat milk. Maybe buy only one avocado a week or swap it out with another vegetable/fruit of your choice. It’s not easy being sustainable in a world dominated by unsustainable companies, but supply in demand means we can show the companies that we want more ethical, fairer foods in our supermarkets. 

4. How do I begin to eat more plant-based foods? 

Finally, going towards a plant-based diet can seem daunting at first. But a great way to start is by swapping out meat and dairy with substitutes. So you can eat what you normally eat, but with the substitute version! Here are some recipes and their substitutes that we love:  

  1. Carbonara. This is a delicious alternative to the warm, welcoming and homely pasta dish that we all know and love, but without the carbon footprint! Here are some substitutes we recommend: 
  • Violife Cheddar.                                                       
  • This isn’t Bacon 


2. Pepperoni Pizza. The party favourite and ultimate Friday night dinner, we love our pepperoni pizza – just without the meat! Some delicious alternatives for you: 

  • Love Seitan Pepperoni 
  • Daiya’s Mozerella 

3.  Bangers and Mash. A classic British dish and countryside favourite, it’s the meal alternatives we’ve all been waiting for…  

  • This isn’t Pork Sausages 
  • Flora dairy-free margarine 


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