Though America’s vegan population continues to hover at approximately two percent, more people are choosing to decrease their meat and dairy intake, which is leading to fewer factory-farmed animals. In 2014, approximately 60,000 fewer dairy cows were raised on factory farms than in 2008, and 400 million fewer land animals were killed for food in the US than in 2013. Paul Shapiro, a vice president at the Humane Society of the United States, writes that the number of animals suffering on factory farms has dropped significantly because of omnivores’ changing dietary habits: “While Americans may not exactly be turning to vegetarianism in droves, tens of millions of people are deciding that the American diet need not be so heavy in animal products” (indeed, daily fluid milk consumption has declined approximately 25 percent amongst all age groups since 1970). “And anyone concerned about animal suffering, the planet, or public health should be able to agree that’s a good thing.” Other countries are becoming increasingly friendly to more veg diets as well: according to a recent study, 55 percent of Dutch people eat meat-free three days a week or more.
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