2015-05-27 at 3:03 pm #57761
In reference to the comment by Jan Spencer in his site tour about vegetarianism being more sustainable than eating meat; I hear comments like these often in the permaculture world and am confused by them. There is a quite large grassroots movement of farmers raising their animals in pastures and feeding them natural diets. With the research I have done, on a mass scale, this seems to be more sustainable than eating vegetarian since the majority of vegetarian’s main staples are grains and beans; crops that when even grown organic, often rely on deforestation and removal of natural landscapes and wildlife habitat to make way for monocultures. Or in an extreme case, the “banana wars” of central America, where at least hundreds of thousands have lost their lives due to fruit production that gets shipped mostly to North America. Compare this to the “grass-fed” or healthy meat movements where farmers clear no land and simply move their livestock to another area of the pasture when the grass gets short. This process mimics the natural grazing habits of grazing animals all over the world and actually builds soil fertility, while leaving habitat for wildlife. With this said, I believe the obvious factor here is that when either meat, vegetables or fruit comes from the mainstream it is typically produced using non sustainable methods, HOWEVER when done on a local level using particular design and techniques, BOTH can be sustainable. Since it is a goal of permaculturists everywhere to be more sustainable, I feel like the bias towards meat eaters on a general level and lumping all meat eaters in with factory farms is unjustified and that people and farmers who strive for health and sustainability should not bash each other but work together to build thriving local economies so the world can rely less on factory farms in general; both plant an animal. In my opinion, it should not be a battle between meat eating and vegetarian; it should be sustainability against non sustainability.2016-06-08 at 1:12 pm #67360
I must say I am impressed by the relevance of your post ! Indeed, it must not be a battle between meat eaters and vegetarians but a battle to acheive sustainability. A lot of people, especially vegans are more concerned about the fact that people eat meat, but they sometimes forget that the veggies they eat are more polluted and non sustainable than the chicken from the neighbourgh ! However, when we don’t have a lot of alternatives or options, banninshing meat from your plate is already a big step: it means you are concerned about the quality and the sustanability of what is on your plate !
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