Dairy Industry Admits That Vegan Activists Are a Threat to Its Existence
World dairy leaders admitted the dairy sector is 'facing an existential threat' from vegan campaigning at a recent industry summit.
Coming together at the event in Belfast, dairy bosses from the U.K., China, Japan, and Australia voiced concerns over the 'myths and scare stories' that are being presented about dairy by vegans.
Calling it a "superfood," chairman of Dairy UK Paul Vernon stressed that the industry needs to ensure that the message about the "nutritious' product" is "heard loud and clear by consumers who are under a constant barrage of misleading and ill-informed messages about dairy."
However, as Susan Levin, a registered dietitian and director of nutrition education for the nonprofit Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine points out:
Milk and other dairy products are the No. 1 source of artery-clogging saturated fat in the American diet, contributing to heart disease, type 2 diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease. Studies have also linked dairy products to an increased risk of breast, ovarian and prostate cancers.
An industry in crisis
Vernon, who is also the chief executive of Gambia Cheese, said that the dairy sector has "changed massively" over the past 30 years.
Tomas Pietrangeli, managing director of Arla UK, added: "The myths and scare stories that are being presented about dairy does give the industry a potential crisis and in the UK and Europe we could be facing an existential threat from anti-dairy campaigning."
Healthy, cruelty-free alternatives like coconut milk mean less people are drinking cow's milk, which is tied to a host of concerns regarding human health, animal welfare and the environment. (image: Oleksandra Naumenko/Shutterstock)
Dairy industry attempts to debunk facts
He went on to say that dairy businesses should focus on young women.
"Changing the visual image of milk and focusing on young women is essential in establishing the message that one of the greatest sources of foods is still relevant and part of modern day life," said Pietrangeli.
"It's time to get behind the goodness and time to debunk the anti-dairy myths and unsubstantiated claims."
But the reality for public health is far from good.
"A 2012 study published by the American Medical Association showed that children who consume the largest quantities of dairy products have at least as many bones break as those who consume less milk," writes Levin.
"Among the most active girls, those who consumed more dairy and calcium actually experienced more stress fractures compared with those who consumed less. Similarly, another study found that the more milk teenagers consumed, the more bone fractures they later experienced as adults."
An earlier version of this article was originally published by Plant Based News. Read the original.