Our daily food consumption directly affects our environment.
Food production contributes to the global climate crisis and is responsible for about a quarter of all greenhouse gas emissions, and a large part of our water footprint. The production of beef requires nearly ten times as much water used in plant production.
The Baylor sustainability club hopes to mitigate this issue by joining the international initiative known as “Meatless Monday”. The dining hall director, Mr. Gary Klein, and the rest of the dining hall staff were more than willing to help and were very accommodating to the club’s endeavor. Together, they reformed Baylor’s November menu, substituting the typical meat options with high-protein, healthy vegetarian entrees such as bean burgers, "impossible" burgers, etc. This plant-based diet, promotes eating habits that are not only healthy for everyone on campus but also healthier for our planet.
The Meatless Monday movement, encourages students and faculty to not eat meat for one day a week. Students and faculty who wish to participate can sign a pledge, found outside of the dining hall, to answer this challenge. After the end of each week, four Meatless Monday winners (3 students and 1 faculty) are arbitrarily chosen from the pledge and receive a prize for their commitment and desire to make a positive difference in the world.
Sophomore, Caleb Nunes, a previously devout meat-eater, attests that the Meatless Monday experience has “opened my eyes” and has unexpectedly, “diversified my diet, not restricting it.” He adds that through the greater emphasis on a plant-based diet at school, he now consumes significantly less meat, “resulting in higher energy and brain power throughout the day.”
This impact was felt by much of the Baylor community, and the Baylor Sustainability Club hopes everyone becomes more intentional in what they eat, keeping in mind that positive change can be as simple as moderating our meat consumption.