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Mon Feb 18, 2013, 02:46 PM

Halve meat consumption, scientists urge rich world

http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2013/feb/18/halve-meat-consumption-scientists
<snip>
People in the rich world should become "demitarians" eating half as much meat as usual, while stopping short of giving it up in order to avoid severe environmental damage, scientists have urged, in the clearest picture yet of how farming practices are destroying the natural world.

They said the horsemeat scandal had uncovered the dark side of our lust for meat, which has fuelled a trade in undocumented livestock and mislabelled cheap ready meals. "There is a food chain risk," said Prof Mark Sutton, who coined the term demitarian and is lead author of a UN Environment Programme (Unep) study published on Monday. "Now is a good time to talk to people about this."

The quest for ever cheaper meat in the past few decades most people even in rich countries ate significantly less meat one and two generations ago has resulted in a massive expansion of intensively farmed livestock. This has diverted vast quantities of grain from human to animal consumption, requiring intensive use of fertilisers, pesticides and herbicides and, according to the Unep report, "caused a web of water and air pollution that is damaging human health". The run-off from these chemicals is creating dead zones in the seas, causing toxic algal blooms and killing fish, while some are threatening bees, amphibians and sensitive ecosystems. "The attention this meat scare has drawn poor quality meat. It shows society must think about livestock and food choices much more, for the environment and health," said Sutton.

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Arrow 115 replies Author Time Post
Reply Halve meat consumption, scientists urge rich world (Original post)
malaise Feb 2013 OP
ZombieHorde Feb 2013 #1
malaise Feb 2013 #12
RadiationTherapy Feb 2013 #65
KamaAina Feb 2013 #2
Flaxbee Feb 2013 #13
KamaAina Feb 2013 #20
Ed Suspicious Feb 2013 #28
KamaAina Feb 2013 #19
msongs Feb 2013 #3
Duer 157099 Feb 2013 #4
JDPriestly Feb 2013 #25
CreekDog Feb 2013 #76
Duer 157099 Feb 2013 #81
CreekDog Feb 2013 #83
Duer 157099 Feb 2013 #86
quinnox Feb 2013 #5
RebelOne Feb 2013 #6
alp227 Feb 2013 #7
Gorp Feb 2013 #42
renate Feb 2013 #78
Eleanors38 Feb 2013 #93
raccoon Feb 2013 #8
valerief Feb 2013 #16
Viva_La_Revolution Feb 2013 #27
Eleanors38 Feb 2013 #94
Bake Feb 2013 #61
Benton D Struckcheon Feb 2013 #9
felix_numinous Feb 2013 #10
Coyotl Feb 2013 #64
gollygee Feb 2013 #11
otherone Feb 2013 #14
riderinthestorm Feb 2013 #56
otherone Feb 2013 #59
JDPriestly Feb 2013 #24
valerief Feb 2013 #15
malaise Feb 2013 #21
Ikonoklast Feb 2013 #17
mattclearing Feb 2013 #75
Scootaloo Feb 2013 #77
DisgustipatedinCA Feb 2013 #108
Ikonoklast Feb 2013 #92
mattclearing Feb 2013 #109
wickerwoman Feb 2013 #96
gollygee Feb 2013 #100
AAO Feb 2013 #18
FarCenter Feb 2013 #22
JDPriestly Feb 2013 #23
BlancheSplanchnik Feb 2013 #46
JDPriestly Feb 2013 #74
BlancheSplanchnik Feb 2013 #90
JDPriestly Mar 2013 #112
smirkymonkey Feb 2013 #62
Dustlawyer Feb 2013 #26
darkangel218 Feb 2013 #33
customerserviceguy Feb 2013 #45
LanternWaste Feb 2013 #48
Dustlawyer Feb 2013 #73
LanternWaste Feb 2013 #49
Politicalboi Feb 2013 #29
DFW Feb 2013 #30
pinboy3niner Feb 2013 #31
malaise Feb 2013 #57
darkangel218 Feb 2013 #32
judesedit Feb 2013 #34
Berlum Feb 2013 #35
NickB79 Feb 2013 #36
Gorp Feb 2013 #37
tritsofme Feb 2013 #50
Gorp Feb 2013 #54
Major Nikon Feb 2013 #68
Gorp Feb 2013 #70
Raine Feb 2013 #53
Gorp Feb 2013 #55
FedUpWithIt All Feb 2013 #103
Gorp Feb 2013 #110
AlecBGreen Feb 2013 #38
arely staircase Feb 2013 #41
Champion Jack Feb 2013 #43
drokhole Feb 2013 #60
AlecBGreen Feb 2013 #97
drokhole Feb 2013 #111
Kolesar Feb 2013 #80
AlecBGreen Feb 2013 #98
Kolesar Feb 2013 #102
Eleanors38 Feb 2013 #95
AlecBGreen Feb 2013 #101
FedUpWithIt All Feb 2013 #104
kimmylavin Feb 2013 #39
Fedaykin Feb 2013 #40
War Horse Feb 2013 #44
firenewt Feb 2013 #47
Purveyor Feb 2013 #51
Gato Moteado Feb 2013 #52
RedCappedBandit Feb 2013 #58
GoCubsGo Feb 2013 #69
emsimon33 Feb 2013 #63
dembotoz Feb 2013 #66
malaise Feb 2013 #67
area51 Feb 2013 #71
ProfessionalLeftist Feb 2013 #72
Matariki Feb 2013 #79
Neoma Feb 2013 #82
AsahinaKimi Feb 2013 #84
malaise Feb 2013 #87
AsahinaKimi Feb 2013 #88
CharlieVicker Feb 2013 #85
stuntcat Feb 2013 #89
Llewlladdwr Feb 2013 #91
0rganism Feb 2013 #99
malaise Feb 2013 #105
shcrane71 Feb 2013 #106
Kalidurga Feb 2013 #107
flvegan Mar 2013 #113
malaise Mar 2013 #115
Fire Walk With Me Mar 2013 #114

Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 02:51 PM

1. Well that is just unAmerican.

Hahahaha!

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Response to ZombieHorde (Reply #1)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 03:59 PM

12. I haven't eaten red meat since 1979

Last edited Tue Feb 19, 2013, 07:23 AM - Edit history (1)

We eat hormone free bird and seafood.

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Response to malaise (Reply #12)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 07:06 AM

65. Me too. I eat birds and fish, but no mammals.

It is easier on the digestion and has less cholesterol.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 02:54 PM

2. "This has diverted vast quantities of grain from human to animal consumption"

So has ethanol. 40 percent of the U.S. corn crop ends up in our gas tanks rather than on our tables.

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Response to KamaAina (Reply #2)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:06 PM

13. not to mention the water necessary to feed and "process" the livestock

and of course, not to mention the awful conditions many of these animals suffer through.

Hell, to to "quarter-tarians" --- reduce meat consumption by 3/4. We'd all be much healthier...

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Response to Flaxbee (Reply #13)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:27 PM

20. Just scarfed down a veggie lunch

tray of pasta with marinara sauce. My dear friend the abolitionist vegan will be pleased.

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Response to KamaAina (Reply #20)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:52 PM

28. I'm with you. I had pasta with cream of mushroom soup and peas poured over it. It was actually

tasty and relatively low impact.

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Response to KamaAina (Reply #2)


Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 03:02 PM

3. not that difficult to cut out meat 4 to5 days a week, then on to 7 days a week nt

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 03:03 PM

4. But but but

what about all those people that work in the meat industry?!?!? They will lose their jobs! No, eat MORE meat so we can employ MORE people!!!

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Response to Duer 157099 (Reply #4)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:40 PM

25. Actually, this could be very bad news for cow lovers.

The less beef we eat, the fewer cows.

I love milk products but don't eat much meat.

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Response to Duer 157099 (Reply #4)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 03:24 AM

76. I love beef, but I don't love much of the beef sold in this country

from a mechanized, drugged, corn fed industry that leaves the meat less enjoyable now than in the past.

the best thing for beef lovers is for the country to make less of it and make less of it more responsibly than more of it is being made now.

then it will taste better and be better for the environment than it is now.

as for jobs, why do we need to eat a certain unhealthy thing to keep people employed?

why do i have to gladly welcome junk mail into my house to keep postal workers employed, even though it harms the environment?

why do i need to drive everywhere to keep auto workers employed when i have to replace my car sooner?

why do i have to do all these things that i wouldn't do or wouldn't need to do, all things that increase global climate change, just to keep people employed, when what i'd be happy to do is pay taxes and pay for for things to be responsibly made, to keep people employed in jobs that help people and help the nation as much as possible, that fix things, that build infrastructure.

why do i have to do things i wouldn't do and don't feel comfortable doing, things that are harmful so that people can have a job, when i'm happy to support jobs in other fields, through taxes and responsible purchases.

i don't accept the guilt here, when i gladly support a better alternative that will either support those affected or give them employment.

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Response to CreekDog (Reply #76)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:25 AM

81. You know I was being

sarcastic, right?

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Response to Duer 157099 (Reply #81)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 01:32 PM

83. I thought there was a 50-50 chance

sadly, around here, there are posters who could've said what you said verbatim, but meant it.

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Response to CreekDog (Reply #83)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 01:43 PM

86. I know

and it is sad

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 03:07 PM

5. sounds good to me

 

Not only would it help environmentally, but I imagine it would be a very good move for human health too.

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Response to quinnox (Reply #5)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 03:10 PM

6. As a vegetarian, sounds good to me also. n/t

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 03:20 PM

7. So it's time to promote hunting now?

Given all these consequences I say let nature decide how much meat should exist.

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Response to alp227 (Reply #7)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 05:56 PM

42. I despised hunters until I became a vegetarian. Now I respect them.

 

You take no responsibility when you pick up a shrink-wrapped package of dead animal parts in a styrofoam tray at the grocery store. A hunter takes responsibility for what it kills and eats.

I haven't eaten meat since 1989 and will never again do so. But my views on hunting are so different now. I used to think it was cruel. What's cruel is what our animal farms do to the creatures that end up on those styrofoam trays. Hunting is natural.

I'll never eat anything containing animal parts again, but at least I understand the role that hunting falls into. Well, at least now I do. Factory farming is simply wrong, for animals and for plants. It's killing the world.

The amount of meat that exists is the cumulative of all living creatures. Nature does a pretty good job of regulating that. Humans do not.

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Response to Gorp (Reply #42)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 04:48 AM

78. yup.I could never be a hunter myself, but the lives the animals lead before death are so much better

I'm a crummy vegetarian (I don't want to create an economic demand for meat, so I don't buy it for myself, but if my family has leftovers that are going to be thrown away, I'll sneak a bite... darn it, I do still like the taste).

I don't think that people who buy meat in grocery stores are horrible people (after all, I do buy it for my family, since the alternative is killing it myself, which isn't going to happen). I think that by the time meat is shrinkwrapped and put on those styrofoam trays, it seems as innocuous as any food that didn't come from a living creature that was bred under unspeakably horrible conditions. It's sterilized for our psychological protection.

But I did use to think that hunters were kind of mean, even sadistic, until I realized that if they eat the meat from the animals they kill, they are at least willing to get their hands dirty. So, like you, I do respect them even though I would never ever ever ever ever hunt myself.

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Response to Gorp (Reply #42)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 02:17 AM

93. I hunt & take 2 deer/yr, plus birds & squirrels...

Lower cooking temp & time. And the animals have better than 50/50 odds of getting past me, unlike "farm-raised."

Get to know the right people & it's cheaper, too!

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 03:22 PM

8. We should eat more Burmese python. They are a real PITA in FL, and we would be doing FL a favor. nt

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Response to raccoon (Reply #8)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:19 PM

16. Ha! Yeah, that and nutria. nt

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Response to valerief (Reply #16)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:50 PM

27. eww! they're just rats that live in the water. nt

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Response to Viva_La_Revolution (Reply #27)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 02:20 AM

94. Squirrels are rats in the trees, but superb eating.

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Response to raccoon (Reply #8)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 09:26 PM

61. I hear it tastes like chicken ...



Bake

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 03:26 PM

9. I'm doing it...

...simply by not having meat for lunch. That means I only have meat if it's for dinner (never had sausages or anything like that for breakfast) and that means maybe 3 to 4 times a week.
So, if you keep breakfast to toast and oj or something like that, keep lunch strictly veg, then you're down to just dinner. I think most people should be able to manage that.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 03:28 PM

10. I buy organic

meat, cut it up and freeze it--and use it as a flavoring for soups and stews. I save all broths too--it is more than enough protein, saves $$ and the organic meat is way more delicious.

I wish I could go all the way vegetarian, but this is the way for me now

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Response to felix_numinous (Reply #10)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 03:07 AM

64. But, but, God made the Factory Farmer.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 03:28 PM

11. We are not vegetarians, but we have cut way way way back

on how much meat we eat. It just isn't that healthy. We eat vegetarian/vegan meals part of the time, and when we do eat meat in a meal, we eat much less and use more veggies instead. Like tonight I'm making stroganoff, but I'm putting in just a small amount of meat, more to flavor it than for the meat content, and putting in a slew of mushrooms instead. It's healthier, plus we've become very picky about where we'll get food, and especially animal products, and good meat/eggs/dairy costs a LOT more than factory farmed stuff, so we make up for the increased price by having a lot less. It costs three times as much, so we eat a third of what we did.

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Response to gollygee (Reply #11)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:07 PM

14. we have stopped eating meat most of the time too

when we are invited to dinners we eat what is served.

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Response to otherone (Reply #14)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 07:44 PM

56. This describes us. When we're out at somebody's house, we'll eat what's served

without complaint but I don't cook it anymore myself. My 16 yr old daughter is a pretty strict vegetarian so cooking entirely different meals isn't feasible. Its easier to just cook vegetarian for all of us.

Now I find I'm also having issues handling the meat if/when I've cooked it for things like Thanksgiving and Christmas. It turns my stomach to handle it anymore now that we're several years into a virtually entirely vegetarian life. I do know, and patronize, local farmers who pasture raise grass fed livestock - from chickens to beef so when I must serve a meal with meat I'm getting the highest quality - hormone free and humanely treated. No disgusting feedlots involved.

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Response to riderinthestorm (Reply #56)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 07:57 PM

59. thanks for the reply

:kick:

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Response to gollygee (Reply #11)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:39 PM

24. We have too. We have already cut our meat consumption at

least in half.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:18 PM

15. The only meat I eat are birds and occasionally fish. Is that okay?

I've been doing this for at least a dozen years.

I'm not sure poultry is considered meat. Ever since being a vegetarian morphed into eating eggs and fish, I don't know what labels mean anymore.

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Response to valerief (Reply #15)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:30 PM

21. Same here - since 1979

and we eats lots of peas and beans as well.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:20 PM

17. Maybe he should tell the Chinese to cut it out. They lead the world in absolute terms

in the amount of meat consumed; it currently stands at DOUBLE that of the United States.

Our meat consumption per capita is still higher, but has not only levelled off, it is dropping, as is the absolute number.

China's meat consumption in both categories is soaring.


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Response to Ikonoklast (Reply #17)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 03:18 AM

75. People say the same thing about CO2.

Like somehow pointing to the Chinese will make it less wrong.

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Response to mattclearing (Reply #75)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 04:25 AM

77. We don't want there to be a beef gap with the red Chinese!

Swear to god these poeple are like toddlers arguing over whose chunk of cake has smoother icing or something.

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Response to Scootaloo (Reply #77)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 10:32 PM

108. I didn't even know about the Beef Gap

I'm giving McDonalds gift certificates for all of my future gift-giving needs. Per capita isn't good enough. We must retake the absolute meat consumption title back from China.

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Response to mattclearing (Reply #75)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 01:45 AM

92. It's a fairly simple graph.

I guess those trend lines are hard to figure out.

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Response to Ikonoklast (Reply #92)

Fri Feb 22, 2013, 08:16 AM

109. Are you a vegetarian?

Yeah, didn't think so.

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Response to Ikonoklast (Reply #17)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 02:53 AM

96. And they have four times the population of the US

so the average Chinese person eats half as much meat as the average American.

Why should they "cut it out" when they're not the ones who invented or spread factory farming and when they're already (despite their "soaring" consumption) eating meat at the level recommended in the original OP?

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Response to Ikonoklast (Reply #17)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 09:21 PM

100. OK two things

1. Wouldn't you expect them to eat more since they have way way way more people?

2. Because we can't do everything, we shouldn't do anything?

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:22 PM

18. Keep your greasy hands off my filet minion!

 

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:35 PM

22. Cutting back is good; but meat substitutes are energy intensive

And some of the processing to make them is environmentally unfriendly.

Vegetables and fruits generally require more irrigation, pesticides and fertilizers than grain and hay farming.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:38 PM

23. Halve the rate of human reproduction.

Birth control for all is the answer.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #23)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:17 PM

46. this. --^--

Everything being done in terms of sustainability is good, but the overarching truth is that no amount of trying to clean up after ourselves will neutralize the environmental impact that we humans impose on the planet.

Not just environmental impacts, but crime, mass production, breakdown of beaurocracies and social systems, impersonalized services of all kinds, increase in stress and antisocial behaviors of all kinds from discourtesy to hostility to hurting and taking advantage of weaker beings--human AND animal. Law of the Jungle.

Birth control and incentives for limiting reproduction to none or one is what we desperately need.

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Response to BlancheSplanchnik (Reply #46)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 03:12 AM

74. Thanks. Every word of your post is true and hits the real issues.

I always (or nearly always because I am, after all, a pretty tough cookie) enjoy your posts. They are very thoughtful, and I appreciate the insights you add on DU. You are an unsung hero of DU. Thanks a million.

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #74)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 12:15 AM

90. JDPriestly....gee...thank you !

That was so .... such ... geee.. just felt good to hear that, thank you!

Means quite a bit to me because you're one of the people who I really respect around here for your intellect, knowledge, sharp mind....

Took me a while to reply cuz I wanted to find the right words. Still, don't feel like I'm articulating myself too well here.....

I wish I were a tough ol broad....actually I'm seven years old, wearing a middle-age suit.

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Response to BlancheSplanchnik (Reply #90)

Sun Mar 3, 2013, 12:42 AM

112. You are great! I'm always in awe of your posts.

(I didn't answer sooner because I wasn't on DU.)

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Response to JDPriestly (Reply #23)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 09:36 PM

62. Winner!

I have no problem cutting back on meat, but the real issue is the overpopulation of the planet.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:45 PM

26. I have been trying to eat all of the cows, pigs, birds, and fish, but they keep making more!

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Response to Dustlawyer (Reply #26)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 05:11 PM

33. lmao!!

Me too!

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Response to Dustlawyer (Reply #26)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:11 PM

45. I'll help you!

When I see religious beliefs about what to eat, and especially what not to eat, dressed up as science, I fear for my ability to continue to make my own choices.

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Response to customerserviceguy (Reply #45)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:22 PM

48. How precisely is the premise of the OP religion dressed as science?

"When I see religious beliefs about what to eat, and especially what not to eat, dressed up as science..."
How precisely is the premise of the OP religion dressed as science?

"I fear for my ability to continue to make my own choices."
Yet you choose (freely I might ad) to be absurdly paranoid with no governmental or religious pressure to compel you to choose otherwise...

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Response to LanternWaste (Reply #48)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 05:14 PM

73. I failed to include the sarcasm icon but it was

evidentially a poor attempt at humor.

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Response to Dustlawyer (Reply #26)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:29 PM

49. First world problems do tend to make us trivialize actual issues

First world problems do tend to make us trivialize actual issues and real concerns via the mechanism of misplaced guilt.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 04:52 PM

29. We need to feed cattle with Hemp seeds

Hemp IS the solution to our farming problems. No pesticides at ALL. It has many functions. Hemp can feed and clothe us much cheaper than corn or cotton. And it can run our cars. And your crop of Hemp can do all 3 and you make money from all 3 from the same acre. Oh but it looks like Marijuana, what will the children think? The children will thank us 20 years from now.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 05:02 PM

30. Too late

After my cardiac near-miss 9 years ago, I was told to stay away from meat from anything that walked on four legs. Poultry and fish were OK. Butter, ice cream, eggs and cheese were not, and that was difficult, but dropping mammal meat from my diet was a surprisingly easy thing to do. Best yet: I'm alive to tell the tale!

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 05:05 PM

31. I can think of a good place to start...

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Response to pinboy3niner (Reply #31)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 07:48 PM

57. Bwaaaaaaahahahahahaha

You're on a roll

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 05:09 PM

32. No way, no how!!

I love steaks more than anything else in the world

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 05:38 PM

34. You will also greatly reduce major animal abuse.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 05:45 PM

35. Where do the WeenieTarians stand on this?

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 05:46 PM

36. Whether we want to or not is immaterial now

20 years from now, we'll all be eating far less meat, whether we want to or not.

Climate change is already screwing our ability to grow enough grain for everyone and is set to get much worse, driving the cost of livestock feed ever higher. The cost of meat will only increase, no matter what we'd like to see.

I suggest everyone learn how to make a quality pot of beans and rice with every meal like my wife's family does in Puerto Rico.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 05:50 PM

37. Eliminate it. Meat is not a necessary dietary component.

 

The majority of what's served now is factory farmed fodder. It is full of antibiotics and toxic chemicals, destroys vast areas with waste and waterway pollution, and (animal abuse issues aside) is killing our agricultural system with GMO feed and herbicides to keep the fodder fed.

For every protein a creature provides, the plant matter necessary to produce it far outweighs the meat value. Beef has a 16:1 ratio. Pigs are generally in the 10:1 range. Chicken is the head of the class with a 5:1 ratio. Lentils have a solid 1:1 ratio. Soy, 1:1. Other legumes, 1:1. Grains, 1:1. The math really isn't this hard here.

We are structurally omnivours but we have no need for meat. Vegetarian societies rarely if ever have obese individuals. The US is swamped with them.

Okay, back to the animal abuse issues I set aside. Chickens are debeaked and stacked in cages six or so high to defecate on the ones below. The males chicks are tossed into trash bags while still alive. Pigs are raised in pens so small that they can't even turn around. They sleep in their shit. Cows are hoisted by one back leg to be put on "the rack" to be killed. Turkeys are put in a Palin funnel to have their necks chopped off and drain the blood.

Veal is a calf that's been deprived of all forms of iron, all movement, and all types of what could be considered a life. Foie gras is the liver of a goose that was deprived of a normal diet, one replaced by corn and other fatty substances.

None of this is necessary. Humans have lived on vegetarian diets since the beginning of time. I have no problem with hunters. At least they take responsibility for what they kill to eat. That's actually natural and I'm fine with that. But when you buy a package of mystery meat or whatever the fuck they put in "hamburger" patties at a fat food joint, you're not in harmony with nature or the natural way.

If there is a god, I seriously doubt that's what he had in mind for us. As I seem to recall, there's something about humans being the sheperds of our flocks in the Bible. Again, I'm not religeous, but I'm damn certain there's no way a god of any type would endorse eating animals when there are far better sources of nutrients available.

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Response to Gorp (Reply #37)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:34 PM

50. No thanks!

Welcome to DU though!

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Response to tritsofme (Reply #50)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 07:07 PM

54. Thanks for the welcome, but "MEAT IS MURDER" is sort of requisite here.

 

;}

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Response to Gorp (Reply #54)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:09 AM

68. Not sure how you figure that

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Response to Major Nikon (Reply #68)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 09:21 AM

70. Doesn't PETA use that as one of their slogans?

 

I meant it as a joke. PETA is too extreme for my tastes.

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Response to Gorp (Reply #37)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 07:00 PM

53. TOTALLY on point. nt

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Response to Raine (Reply #53)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 07:08 PM

55. Are you a vegehegian too? It takes some work, but we can all do it.

 

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Response to Gorp (Reply #37)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 10:00 PM

103. Agriculture works best when there is balance.

Meat raised in commercial farming is all the things you claim.

But that is not the only way and certainly isn't the best way. Livestock typically thrives on somewhat marginal land and with very little, if any, grain input. The animals provide non-petroleum sources of nutrients and fertilizers back into the soils.

The heavy reliance on soy products, which is somewhat necessary to replace meat in a human diet, has increasingly evident drawbacks, physical, environmental and social. First, it is a known endocrine disruptor and the full affects of this are not yet fully known. Second the crops are fairly destructive environmentally as a mono-crop which is how the majority of soy is grown. Mono-crops are also typically grown using petroleum based fertilizers and chemicals which cause broad environmental damage. Most of the soy products that people consume, ie. meat replacers, are also heavily processed which requires a lot of energy and transport.

There is another way and that is a return to the small farm model. In a small farm model, which is what i believe the science in the OP is recommending, livestock is treated humanely and with great care, they in turn provide perfect soil enrichment for the farm. Many heritage breeds, which factory farming has nearly eliminated, are being protected and raised in increasing numbers by small farmers. These breeds, and the valuable qualities specific to them, would be lost to us if it weren't for the efforts being made by these farmers. Lastly, this model lends itself very well to local food markets. Little is required to be shipped in, in most cases, and little needs shipped out.

I have no issue if someone has a preference toward vegetarianism and i admire the conviction and constraint there but i do not see how it could possibly be sustainable as a model for all.

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Response to FedUpWithIt All (Reply #103)

Fri Feb 22, 2013, 10:55 AM

110. I agree with almost everything you just posted except for the "model for all" line.

 

Smaller farmers tend to practice crop rotation that the factory farm model doesn't embrace. Soy and corn should be alternated at least every two years. We're fortunate to have an excellent farmers market with a few stands that make every effort possible to buy as close to local as possible and actively seek out organic produce.

So when corn first becomes available in FL, that's what they start with (and label place of origin) and they work their way up the coast as the season progresses until they're purchasing from small farms in the immediate area. They also grow their own produce when the seasons are right.

And contrary to a popular myth, organic produce is not more expensive to produce and often less so. I walk out of the farmers market with BAGS of produce for what seems like a rediculously small amount of money and I couldn't even estimate how much we save each year by growing our own organic food, but it's a lot. Chemicals are expensive and harm the soil.

We're also fortunate to have a lot of farm stands on back roads around here. That's a great way to get high-quality (tender loving care) produce for a good price. I don't have room for large vining plants like watermelons, crook-neck squash, and sugar pumpkins. I always hand over a little more than they're charging just for their effort.

The problem we have is that people want everything to look pretty, so if corn has silk worms or lettuce has a few brown spots, people don't want to buy it. I remember sorting through kale and collards with my grandparents to look for caterpillars and corn ALWAYS had silk worms. They don't eat much, just cut/pick them out. On the other hand, you do NOT want to compost them. That part you throw out.

A family owned grocery store (I know, a dying breed), small chain, has a tractor symbol they use to identify local produce, and they mean local - often picked the day it goes on sale and delivered directly to each store. The giant chain grocery stores use central warehouses so you're lucky if anything in the produce section is less than a week old. Obviously the more northern states aren't going to have local oranges, and drought hits all farmers equally hard, so transportation is a key element for diversity. But adjusting your diet by the season compensates for a lot of that.

As for raising animals, yes, free-range is optimal but the larger the farm the less likely that is to happen. Factory farms depend on over-crowding, heavy antibiotic use (a problem in its own right), growth hormones, run-off that's destroying waterway ecosystems, dwindling bio-diversity, and factory farms account for most of the corn and soy that's grown in the US as feed for the animals. Ethical issues aside, that's not sustainable in the long-run.

On top of that, the protein ratio (what is consumed vs. what comes out of the meat) is always a net loss. Chicken has the best ratio with something like 5:1 and beef has the worst at around 16:1. Pork falls somewhere in the middle. This is true regardless of whether they graze or get feed meal, but the latter is a major waste of growing space, water, and other resources.

India doesn't have nearly the agricultural advantage we do in the US and relies on importing wheat and rice. Lentils and other legumes grow very well there and they export those. Of their 1.2 billion citizens, about a third are vegetarian (some do dairy, others dairy and eggs as I do) - that's more vegetarians than the entire US population.

Sure, they've got problems with poluted water, poverty, and malnutrition just as we do, but it can safely be argued that the problem stems from industrialization and their caste system rather than their diets. They went through the same sort of squeezing out of small farmers that we're going through, and continue to go through.

There's also a cost advantage. Meat is expensive. Legumes and grains are very inexpensive and will last pretty much indefinitely if kept dry and out of the reach of pests. We use 1/2 gallon mason jars for the purpose. I've still got chick peas from 20 years ago when I bought a 25 lb bag for about $15. They all cook quickly, are convenient, and provide an excellent and easily absorbed protein source. Peanuts are the exception with respect to shelf life.

Amaranth and quinoa are both complete proteins, each on their own. It's almost impossible not to get enough protein as a vegetarian, but I have known a few who live on pizza and diet soda - I'm thinking maybe that's not so healthy.

What we need to do as a society, and even as a world society, is make the mega-aggriculture businesses like Monsanto see that they need to change their approach. As it stands, the US subsidizes the hell out of mega farms and chemical/GMO companies. We need to stop that and prop up the small farmers before they disappear.

Monsanto is throwing lawyers at small farmers who want nothing to do with the company merely because, through no fault of said farmers, their non-GMO crops fell victim to cross-polination from nearby GMO crops or if they fail to purchase more seeds each season, indicating that they're growing from saved seeds (a violation of the "lease" on the DNA). They use "Round-Up Ready" seeds so they also have to purchase large quantities of the chemical for spraying. Yet the weeds are gaining resistance to Round-Up. That house of cards is just waiting to come crashing down.

Food is not intellectual property. Corporations aren't people. Yet the laws we have lean toward giving large corporations the advantage and that's coming at a great cost to our survival security and the well-being of our society. Unless we change that, I cringe to think what things will be like in twenty years.

We grow a lot of our own food, store, can, dry, and freeze a good deal of it, and save seeds for the next season. We've still got a lot of potatoes that we harvested in September. Yet very few people seem to bother with gardening anymore. At least my kids have grown up knowing how to turn bad soil into good and tend to the crops. I just hope that doesn't become a necessity in order to live. I'm not worried about zombies, asteroids, or massive earthquakes, but rather what we are doing to ourselves.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 05:51 PM

38. Raising 100% grass-fed animals is GOOD for the environment

When you raise a herd of herbivores the right way it benefits the environment. A well-managed grassland slows erosion, builds topsoil, increases water retention, promotes biodiversity, adds organic matter AND sequesters more carbon that a forest. All this, and you get to eat the labor force

Based on our current flawed method of producing meat in feedlots, yes, reducing consumption is better for the environment. That assumes however there isnt a better way to do things. There is. Dont cut out meat. Seek a local farmer who is doing things the right way and patronize them. The economy, your health, and the environment will all thank you!

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Response to AlecBGreen (Reply #38)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 05:56 PM

41. +1 eom

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Response to AlecBGreen (Reply #38)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:02 PM

43. +100000000000000

No way will I cut out meat, however, I do buy local and grassfed .

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Response to AlecBGreen (Reply #38)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 08:48 PM

60. Allan Savory's "Holistic Pasture Management" is incredible in rebuilding soils...





Joel Salatin, another pioneer and advocate, is doing the same with his "management-intensive grazing" (different name for the same thing). The first thing we need to due is to turn the millions of acres of mono-crop corn, soy, and/or grain dedicated purely to animal feed into intensively managed pasture:


To Kick Climate Change, Replace Corn With Pastured Beef

As Savory says in his short speech, only with livestock can we mimic nature.

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Response to drokhole (Reply #60)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 09:18 PM

97. thanks for the links

I am a beginner farmer and raise 100% grassfed goats as well as pastured poultry and pork. I am fortunate to live near Joel and supply Polyface with their goats. It has been a real treat to visit their farm and to see what my farm can be like in 20 years. The amount of grass they grow and the diversity of their pastures gives me goosebumps! They currently have 100+ acres in pasture plus leased farms and, by using good restorative grazing techniques, their land can support FOUR TIMES the number of cattle per acre as their neighbors, while rebuilding soil to boot! Its so exciting to witness and gives me great hope for the future.

Thanks again for the links! Im off to check them out

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Response to AlecBGreen (Reply #97)

Mon Feb 25, 2013, 01:07 PM

111. Whoa, that is freaking awesome!

Thanks so much for sharing and for all your efforts!

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Response to AlecBGreen (Reply #38)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 06:55 AM

80. Livestock can support sustainable soil management, but I eat vegetables

Livestock is the only way I know to farm with zero petroleum based inputs to the system. There was an article about it on DU about ten years ago. I try to manage my vegetable garden with no synthesized fertilizers. Since our plot is only 1000 square feet, I can manage that with compost, rock dusts, and ten bags of coffee grounds from Starbucks.

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Response to Kolesar (Reply #80)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 09:20 PM

98. +1

keep it up! You are on the leading edge of a great movement. We are coming full circle in our agricultural techniques - smaller, more diversified and more productive farms. 1000 square feet can grow A LOT of food cant it?

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Response to AlecBGreen (Reply #98)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 09:26 PM

102. My challenge now is to harvest later in the year

I cover greens and broccoli with row covers so that I can harvest them until November. Our first frost is not until November 1.
It takes a lot of planning.

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Response to AlecBGreen (Reply #38)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 02:40 AM

95. Yep, far better to raise cows that way. Used to be cheaper

To purchase "ungraded" grass-fed beef. Now it's HIGHER in price because of demand. That's why I stick with deer.

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Response to Eleanors38 (Reply #95)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 09:25 PM

101. deer is an excellent choice

its healthy, delicious, cheap and doesnt require treating animals like "inanimate piles of protoplasmic material."

Grass fed beef is easy; all cattle are grass fed for a portion of their life. Grass finishing (creating the marble) is much tougher but farmers are learning how to do it well again. Anyone can put out a trough of corn and fatten a steer. Its takes much more careful management and planning to fatten cattle on grass.

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Response to AlecBGreen (Reply #38)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 10:00 PM

104. Agreed. n/t

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 05:52 PM

39. Already on it.

When the economy had hit us particularly hard, we cut back on meat.
Now that we're back on our feet, we still just leave it as a once-or-twice a week thing, not the five or six times we'd been eating it.
I could never go full vegetarian, but I'm okay with cutting back...

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 05:53 PM

40. Soylent Green is People!

 

Meat free pizza is my answer. {He types while munching on a 5 cheese pizza} Not sure Earth has the carrying capacity to keep 7 billion + people fed and watered...

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:09 PM

44. As an omnivore

I most certainly can get behind this.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:18 PM

47. Eat organic free-range birds, eggs, pork and beef. We had already cut back on chicken and beef

 

due to cost plus my disgust of factory farms in general. Several years ago we found a local mom and pop grocery store that did all its own butchering. They buy only from local small farms that are organic, free range and use no antibiotics. Ever seen a leg from a chicken that actually uses its legs? They look like small turkey legs and are great. I had to stop eating eggs due to a penicillin allergy - there was enough antibiotics in the eggs to make me sick. Free range, organic eggs don't bother me and they are delicious. Another advantage is meat has more flavor. You can use less in stews, soups, pasta etc because the flavor is so much better. The three of us -all adults- get 2 dinners out of 1 large chicken breast and homemade pasta and sauce. Cutting back and eating smart does not equal sacrifice. You can do it too.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:38 PM

51. You just keep your pale, pasty and chapped hands off my 'beef, pork, lamb, goat'... ;) eom

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 06:39 PM

52. i gave up beef 5 years ago.....

....and so should everyone...you have no idea how much rain forest is being destroyed daily to make room for the growing beef industry. i see it everywhere here in costa rica.

i also gave up pork 5 years ago.

i gave up poultry last year.

still eat dairy and fish, but am considering going vegetarian in the next few years.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Mon Feb 18, 2013, 07:51 PM

58. Meat is more of a treat than a staple for me

Most of my protein comes from eggs.

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Response to RedCappedBandit (Reply #58)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:36 AM

69. Same here.

Although, I get more protein from legumes, and to some extent, nuts and dairy than I do eggs. I can't really afford meat, and at this point, I don't miss it anyway. I have mostly lost my taste for it. It's getting that way with cheese, too. I still like it, but the way many restaurants smother their dishes with it just nauseates me.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 02:55 AM

63. I didn't think that I could give up meat, but I really enjoy my meat & dairy-free meals

Saves money

Am so much healthier

Got rid of junk and fast food and eat locally raised and organic (or at least pesticide-free) vegetables and beans and fruit.

Those who don't think they can give up meat, including seafood, should try it. Avoid that fake meat stuff and eat wholesome, healthy meals. You would be surprised how soon you realize that you can live without meat.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 07:37 AM

66. have the horesmeat mixed in your burger scandal spead to the united state

tainted meat almost as bad as tainted love

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Response to dembotoz (Reply #66)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 07:53 AM

67. Don't know n/t

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 12:44 PM

71. Healthier also, to eat less meat. n/t

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 12:50 PM

72. Haven't touched the stuff in at least a decade. n/t

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 04:51 AM

79. Good idea.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 11:26 AM

82. Okay, I'll do it.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 01:35 PM

84. I'm not rich but you can have mine...

I only eat seafood and poultry. No beef, pork or lamb for me.

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Response to AsahinaKimi (Reply #84)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 03:32 PM

87. We are just like you

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Response to malaise (Reply #87)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 03:36 PM

88. Yay!

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Response to malaise (Original post)


Response to malaise (Original post)

Wed Feb 20, 2013, 03:43 PM

89. This is my first reason for not eating meat

because it's the biggest effect. The farming of meat is part of what's causing the mass-extinction of the WILD animals, animals we're driving extinct before we've even bothered to "discover" them.

#1 reason - the Earth
#2 reason - the tortured animals
#3 reason - health

As for health, I'm the only person I know who doesn't eat meat and I'm also the healthiest one I know. Anyone saying you can't be healthy without meat is another example of why I'm ashamed of humanity. The amount of resources it consumes is just incredible, people seem to have no idea what a mess it is.. either they don't know or they really do want their grandkids to inherit a Hell.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 01:27 AM

91. I'll pass, thank you.

I'm perfectly capable of making my own dietary choices.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 09:20 PM

99. Americans read it w/o the l: "Have meat consumption"

This will backfire because we can't spell for shit.
"We need to eat more meat. Scientists say so."

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Response to 0rganism (Reply #99)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 10:01 PM

105. ROFL - you hae a point but it's not only Americans who can't spell

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 10:18 PM

106. Seems Moore Lappe was onto something. nt

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Thu Feb 21, 2013, 10:25 PM

107. Great idea..

But, I do hope people take baby steps on this issue. I can only imagine the chaos that would ensue if everyone did what I did and stopped eating meat in one day. I do like the idea of promoting Meatless Mondays more and extending that to Meatless Mondays and Fridays and then Meatless Monday, Wed., and Fridays etc... until people are maybe just eating meat once or twice a week or not at all. That would give the market time to adjust without throwing our food supply into chaos.

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Sun Mar 3, 2013, 12:50 AM

113. Some responses to this are telling.

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Response to flvegan (Reply #113)

Sun Mar 3, 2013, 06:04 AM

115. LOL

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Response to malaise (Original post)

Sun Mar 3, 2013, 12:55 AM

114. IIRC some vegies such as spinach have much more protein than meat, without the risks

 

both personal and global.

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