sustainable farms, food, life etc.

I am not a vegetarian. I was for like eight years. The reason I stopped is because being a vegetarian is because I felt like it wasn’t enough. I felt like a hypocrite. I needed to be vegan, never use leather and walk about naked. This is unreasonable. So I chose to eat it all but know where it comes from. We buy 1/8th of a buffalo every year from a guy in Arlee and get elk from my uncle. We grow as much as we can in our little plot. I accost people with fruit trees so I can pick and can. We buy organic and try to support locals when available. But, at times, I slip into the not-paying-attention-to-what-I’m-consuming mentality…We could do more for sure…

Lunchables and Tyson meats. This food is affordable and convenient. And in a culture where people are increasingly unaware of what it is they are buying, where it came from and who suffered to bring them that rock bottom price, items like these seem a fine meal or snack for the kids.

But I don’t think this food is affordable. The tables below are from this research.

If you think about the quality of the product and how much nutrition and sustenance can be extracted, then it is actually a rip off. Study after study proves that meat hormones and pesticide residue in produce result in food with decreased vitamin and mineral content and an increase in cancer and health related problems. Check out the decline in the last 60 years (since these pesticides and hormones became abundantly and widely used):


Beyond the quality issue, there is the whole animals-crammed-in-too-small-cages issue. I find this deplorable and am convinced, because I tend to be optimistic about people’s intentions, that if people took time to learn about factory farming, they would dish out the extra $1/pound for meat and an extra $1.50 for milk that is humanely raised and harvested. The Meatrix is a great and hilarious spoof on The Matrix that chats about large agribusinesses and the cost to small farmers, animals and humans that consume food (hi. that includes you!). Newwest.net reports that “when The Meatrix was first released, over 10,000 viewers watched it in a couple of hours and crashed Sustainable Table’s server. The server crashed again, even after it was expanded, as some ten million viewers tuned into the story of factory farming.”

Yes I sometimes eat meat and items that I know are bad bad–especially now that I am pregnant and crave meat–like the Costco polish sausage I devoured last Sunday or the Albertson’s fried chicken I ate at Roger’s pot luck. But we can all try to be better, eh? For the pigs.

My sources:
http://journeytoforever.org/farm_library/worthington-organic.pdf
http://www.planetnatural.com/site/xdpy/kb/grow-organic.html

5 Responses to sustainable farms, food, life etc.

  1. Wendy says:

    Great information. Lots of people don’t know this kind of stuff. I just finished Animal, Vegetable, Miracle by Barbara Kingsolver and it was wonderful. If you haven’t already read it, you should; it’s so inspiring.

    In fact, I’ve decided to start trying to make my own cheese (soft stuff and mozzarella) so we can use the hormone free milk made from pastured cows (not Horizon because even though it’s organic, they pack them in there pretty tight). Barbara swears that it’s pretty easy, and I’d believe anything that woman says.

  2. Jean says:

    Great info. Interestingly, as you mention Lunchables, (which Nathan adored) I just read that Jessica Seinfeld is going to be publishing a book called Deceptively Delicious, a book of recipes that introduce vegetables into cooking food for children. She’s really onto something.

  3. sarah says:

    excellent. as you know, i’ve never been a “force it on others” vegan, but lately i have been encouraging family members, who are not vegetarian, to be more conscious of where the meat, eggs, cheese, etc. they eat comes from. i was at our co-op rainbow reading the signs about the eggs. out of the 10ish types of eggs rainbow sells, there are two farms that actually do everything you’d want to see with respect to the eggs/chickens (no force light/molting, no de-beaking, free access to outside, etc.)…BUT, they have male and females, so the eggs can be fertilized…interesting questions arise. anyway. yay that local/sustainable animal farming is becoming more prevalent (at least out here in sf).

  4. sarah says:

    oh ya ps the eggs from those 2 farms are $8 for a dozen eggs. i think that sounds expensive.

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