Eat More Beef?

Eat more meat? Joel Salatin is known for his interesting sometimes even outrageous comments so it should come as no surprise that when posed with the question, 'should we eat more meat?' his answer is yes...

From an environmental standpoint that is... When considering the environment, he believes without question we should be eating more beef. Cattle can graze on perennials which are plants that last for more than a year whereas chicken and pork feed on annuals which are plants that live their entire lives in one season. It's an understandable argument especially when you consider that Joel won't ship his chickens because of fuel costs and environmental considerations. From a health point though he also points out that Native Americans used to eat 10 pounds of Bison a day and that Argentinians consume twice as much beef as Americans yet have half the instances of colon cancer. 

In the grass-based farming movement one particularly important benefit is often overlooked, which is the environment. Agriculture in the United States requires heavy use and consumption of fossil fuels to transport meat and produce around the country. This is an unfortunate and devastating side effect of our modern food system which Joel touches on in this video. Harvesting the annuals that pigs and chickens feed on requires significantly more fossil fuels than does the harvesting of perennials that cows feed on.

There are so many important factors at play when making simple food related decisions. Animal well being, health and the environment are only a few. However and wherever you decide to purchase your food remember there are folks like Joel close by helping to put it there and whether you decide to buy certain types of meat for one reason or the other (helping to lower fossil fuel emissions, buying meat from animals treated humanely or because of the added health benefits) remember to thank a farmer.

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