Vegetarianism By Country - The Americas - Brazil

Brazil

In 2004, Marly Winckler, President of the Brazilian Vegetarian Society claimed that 5% of the population is vegetarian. According to a 2012 survey undertaken by the Brazilian Institute of Public Opinion and Statistics, 8% of the population, that is, 15.2 million people, identified themselves as vegetarian. The city of São Paulo has the most vegetarians in absolute terms (792,120 people), while Fortaleza has the highest percentage, at 14% of the total population.

The main reason cited is concern for animal rights. Marly Winckler claims that the central reasons for the deforestation of the Amazon are expansive livestock raising (mainly cattle) and soybean crops, most of it for use as an animal feeding, and a minor percentage for edible oil processing (being direct human consumption for use as food nearly negligible), claims that are widely known to have a basis.

As in Canada, vegetarianismo is usually synonymous with lacto-ovo-vegetarianism and vegetarians are sometimes wrongly assumed to be pescetarians and/or pollotarians who tolerate the flesh of fish or poultry, respectively. Nevertheless, veganism, and freeganism, are very common among Brazilian anarchists, punks and members of other groups in the counterculture and/or left-wing movements. Other beliefs generally associated with Brazilian vegetarians are Eastern philosophies and religions, New Age and Spiritism, while it is also commonly said to be related to the emo and indie youth subcultures as influence from the local punks. Brazilian vegetarians reportedly tend to be urban, of middle or upper class and live in the Central-Southern half of the country. Since the 1990s, and specially over the 2000s, several vegetarian and vegan restaurants appeared in the metropolitan regions of São Paulo, Porto Alegre, Curitiba and Rio de Janeiro.

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