Labour on Livestock ?
or Let Them Eat Grass ?
Meat / Dairy Consumption
Posted on 29-04-16
Do we have an obligation to reduce significantly our meat and dairy intake?
It is now widely reported that the animal agriculture sector contributes approximately 50% to global emmissions.
Furthermore, it is also claimed that the amount of plant based food grown purely to feed to animals could, if used to feed humans, feed an additional 8 billion people.
At a time when there is currently great levels of hunger and poverty in the world and strained resources, we must raise the question:
Is it morally or environmentally acceptable to consume products that are so horrendously innefficient to produce?
One must only look at a simple biomass pyramid to realise this.
Meat and dairy / egg consumption also raises obvious moral and ethical implications.
Is it right to enslave an animal for it’s entire life against its will just to produce food for us? Especially when excellent alternatives that are superior nutritionally exist for both meat and dairy?
The taste of certain items of food is not an adequate excuse for the huge cruelty that is prevalent in the meat / dairy / egg industries and the huge environmental footprint.
In some respects we have no choice but to drastically reduce intake of animal products as the issue of climate change is paramount.There are many studies suggesting that animal product consumption is extremely unhealthy.
For too long corporate lobbying has portrayed meat as an excellent source of protein and milk as an excellent source of calcium for example.
This is completely false.
Vegan diets have been shown to produce incredible health benefits.
People who follow a vegan diet show significantly less instances of heart disease, cancers and many other conditions.
It is worth questioning the amount of money that could be saved from healthcare expenditure if instances of conditions like those mentioned were reduced simply through dietry change.
I realise all too well that any such policy that would move to discourage meat and dairy consumption would be drastically unpopular with the general population.
However, the majority would agree that it is morally right to do so given its undisputed disastrous effects on the rainforest, climate, land use and marine ecosystems.
I would strongly argue to have a higher level of debate within the party about how we could approach this issue in a sensitive way to not alienate voters.
I stress that it is an issue that must be tackled whatever the way, we cannot walk by on the other side on this issue and fail to tackle it.
This is an issue that is glossed over in favour of tackling transport sector emissions and other ‘slices of the pie’, when really this is the most significant slice of the pie and without tackling this we are doomed to never reach a zero carbon society.