Tofu worse for the environment than meat, say farmers
Meat is often derided as one of the most environmentally damaging foods to consume, but new research is leading some farmers to claim that tofu could actually be worse.
This is despite studies showing that following a vegan diet could be the “single biggest way” to reduce your environmental impact on earth.
Speaking at the National Farmers Union (NFU) on Monday, Dr Graham McAuliffe of the Rothamsted Institute explained that his unpublished research on tofu has found that the soya-based protein could have a more drastic impact on the planet than beef, pork and chicken.
Dr McAuliffe, who specialises in measuring the environmental impact of foods, pointed out that his findings should be "interpreted with caution" given they were currently just a "proof of concept", The Times reports.
"Without a doubt, peas and ground nuts always have a lower environmental impact than any livestock products," he said.
"But if you look at tofu, which is processed so there is more energy going into its production, when you correct for the fact that the protein in it is not as digestible compared to the meat-based products, you can see that it could actually have a higher global warming potential than any of the monogastric animals," McAuliffe stressed.
"To get the same amount of protein, tofu is worse," the scientist concluded.