Does anyone else feel like it's Monday? I can't shake the feeling that my week just started about two hours ago.
Maybe it's because of the new, crisp weather or maaaaaybe it's because I slept well last night for the first time in a week*, but I feel like I only saw really good, really progressive, really BIG news today.
And then I snarkily (but still mostly kindly) replied to my mother's side of the family via FB when they, yet again, started pushing their religion on me.
...Today is a really good day.
With that said, there have been such distinct progressions this year with big farming, animal rights, and the general movement towards food consciousness that I was reminded of today:
- This week, Tyson Foods (one of the largest meat companies- Yuuuge!) announced that they invested in Beyond Meat (what used to be a much smaller, private brand focused on making "meat" from plant proteins through heavy, lengthy research).
- This comes on the heels of the news that the makers of Spam bought Justin's (a company primarily focused on making organic nut butters).
- There's a rapid increase of meat providers offering antibiotic-free meat and major businesses are signing on to use cage-free eggs (although, really, this isn't that big of a difference for the chickens' welfare, typically, but, hey! Progress towards that!...)
- The industry group representing almost all egg producers is beginning to phase out the act of grinding male chicks alive.
Yes, this sounds like things that should have happened decades ago in most cases, but it hasn't. The fouler practices have largely been ignored and gone unregulated while big farming has continued to massively grow.
This is something significant- the demand for conscious farming must be growing at a fast enough pace that big business is starting to see the profit of it. That, hopefully, means even faster growth to come.
How you can support:
- This probably goes without saying, but, reduce your meat intake. Try to take one day off of meat a week. If everyone in the US didn't eat meat for one day a week, we would save the the same pollution output as if we took 7.6 million cars off our roads. And if you, personally, refrain from meat and cheese one day a week, it would be the same as not driving for 5 weeks or reducing your daily shower by 3 minutes every day. It's little, but it's powerful.
- Be conscious of where your meat is coming from. Having antibiotic-pumped meat could make you resistant to antibiotic treatment and, if shit gets real and you REALLY need antibiotics, you're going to want your body to respond to them. Plus, farmers typically over-pump antibiotics into animals to contradict their horrid lifestyle; having antibiotic-free meat probably means the animal had a better quality of life instead of spending it's time being sick/resisting illness.
- If you can, get your eggs from a farm. I know I'm lucky enough to live in a big city that has these conveniently, but I buy my eggs from the farmer's market every weekend. They're fresh enough to not need to be refrigerated yet and I know these farms care more for their livestock than major distributors.
How you're choosing more:
- A stronger focus on a plant-based diet has proven to be more sustainable for human health.
- You're supporting the environment by reducing the output of pollution by big factory farms as well as their distribution process.
- You're supporting our natural resources when less water is having to go to livestock, their food, and fields.
- You're supporting animal welfare.
*We stayed in a very haunted hotel this past weekend for a wedding... Which, of course, I didn't know of AT ALL until we were checked in and wandering into our lonely room in a back corner. (NOT)Fun times. The decor was en pointe though? Yeesh.