A plant-based diet is beneficial for health. Plant-based diets have been shown to minimise or completely eliminate people’s genetic propensity to developing chronic diseases, such as diabetes type 2, cardiovascular disease, and cancer.
The most comprehensive study on the relationship between consumption of animals (including dairy) and chronic illness is The China Study. This 20-year study showed that people who ate a whole-food, plant-based/vegan diet with a limited intake of processed foods and refined carbohydrates had fewer chronic illnesses.
Antibiotics are widely used in animal production as growth promoters and to treat infections. There is increasing scientific concern that the use of antibiotics in the food chain may increase the threat of superbugs being passed on to humans. In Australia, there are currently no mandatory mechanisms or legal frameworks to collect detailed information on the usage in different animal species.
Hormonal growth promotants (HGPs) are approved for use in pork and beef by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority. They are used in all states except Tasmania. HGPs are not permitted in lamb, chicken meat and egg production, or in the dairy industry. HPGs are banned from use in all meat-producing animals in the European Union.