Friday, February 12, 2010

Vegetarian Diet More Harmful to Environment than Meat Eating

A USDA Choice 2-bone standing rib roast.Image via Wikipedia
Environmental and vegetarian activists have been touting the virtues of a vegetarian diet as a means of helping combat climate change. They argue that raising livestock such as cattle and sheep leads to an increase in greenhouse gasses due to their belching and farting. The British government has even gone so far as to create recommended menus to eliminate high carbon foods like lamb and beef.

Now, a new study conducted by Cranfield University has concluded that switching to a vegetarian diet could actually be more harmful to the environment than a meat eating diet. You might think that the study was commissioned by the cattle and sheep farming industry, but you would be mistaken. It was actually commissioned by the environmental group the World Wildlife Fund.

The study concludes that if people switched from a meat and dairy diet to a vegetarian diet, that more farmland would be needed to supply the United Kingdom with all of their needs. This could potentially lead to further deforestation of the planet to provide that land. In addition, soy based protein substitutes often require a lot of processing and therefore more energy is expended.

I am sure that environmental groups and PETA will continue to push their far left agenda. We will continue to hear how livestock production is harming the environment. To be fair, it would probably benefit us all to occasionally have vegetarian days in our diets. As for me, I think I will have a steak, and I don't think I will feel guilty about it harming the environment.

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  1. Count me in on a steak dinner as well !

  2. I'll have steak any day. Soyburgers just don't do it for me. It seems to me that if these vegetarians are eating a lot of soy beans, not to mention a lot of other beans that they are contributing to the gas problem themselves.

  3. I tried to go vegetarian several years ago. Some of the soy based meat substitutes weren't too bad, like some of the hot dogs, but the soy burgers didn't cut it

  4. Based on the article you link to in the telegraph, it seems like you are oversimplifying and perhaps misrepresenting the findings.

    Going vegetarian isn't the issue. The issue is eating highly processed meat substitutes. To quote the lead:

    "Adopting a vegetarian diet based around meat substitutes such as tofu can cause more damage to the environment, according to a new study."

    One of the authors of the study is quoted as saying, "Simply eating more bread, pasta and potatoes instead of meat is more environmentally friendly."

    To him, I would ask, "Would you like fries with that?"

    I think this is an important study and points to a more important way to save the planet. Eat locally produced food that doesn't depend on products that take a lot of processing or grains to produce.

    Lamb stew and chicken soup are great this way if there are locally raised sheep or chickens.

    Veal and Tofu are some of the worst.

    Likewise turkey burgers and turkey hot dogs are probably better than tofu pups. And they taste a lot better too.

  5. we would all be better served eating less processed food of any type. I think though, at least for myself and some friends who went the vegetarian route, is that many if not most would go the soy based meat substitute route, at least for a while.

  6. I love this. Anything to piss off the arrogant vegetarians.

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