Between watering the crops that farmed animals eat, providing drinking water for billions of animals each year, and cleaning away the filth in factory farms, transport trucks, and slaughterhouses, the farmed animal industry places a serious strain on our water supply. Nearly half of all the water used in the United States goes to raising animals for food.
It takes 5,000 gallons of water to produce 1 pound of meat, while growing 1 pound of wheat only requires 25 gallons. A totally vegetarian diet requires only 300 gallons of water per day, while a meat-eating diet requires more than 4,000 gallons of water per day. You save more water by not eating a pound of beef than you do by not showering for an entire year.
While millions of people across the globe are faced with droughts and water shortages, much of the world’s water supply is quietly being diverted to animal agriculture. As the Western diet spreads to the rest of the world, even desert nations in Africa and the Middle East are pouring what little water they have into meat production.
It is clear that raising animals for food puts a tremendous strain on our already limited water supply, and water is used much more efficiently when it goes toward producing crops for human consumption.