The United Kingdom is a marginal performer (“D”) under the VACI, on par with Japan and Denmark. Although the country’s animal protection legislation is above average, protections for farmed animals are inadequate and animal production and consumption is high.
The livestock sector has the highest economic value within the UK agricultural industry. Factory farming is growing and the country slaughters 17.8 animals per person per year, compared with a global average of 10.1. The country’s dependence on farmed animals is relatively low, with around 3.5 farmed animals per person, versus a global average of 4.1.
While vegetarians account for between 2-9%% of the population (versus a world average of 8%), the average UK diet is rich in animal products. Each person consumes around 53.2g of land-based animal protein per day, compared with a global average of 27.2g. As a result, land animal protein in the diet is high - close to 54% versus a world average of 35.2%.
The United Kingdom is rated as a good performer (“B”) under the Animal Protection Index (API), and its farmed animal legislation achieved a marginal performance rating (“D”) under the same index. While some UK farmed animal protection standards go beyond EU standards, the United Kingdom is yet to ban live animal exports (although it is planned), or the confinement of animals in cages. Learn more about the quality of the United Kingdom’s regulatory frameworks on the API here.