The Meatless Mondays campaign encourages consumers to skip meat one day a week in favor of plant-based foods, and highlights how this simple action can help improve their health and reduce the environmental impacts of their diets. Seems small, but the collective impacts are potentially anything but. According to estimates by the Humane Society of the United States, if every American embraced Meatless Mondays, we would need to raise 1.4 billion fewer farm animals. That translates into a lot fewer toxic chemicals, reduced climate pollution, healthier soils and waterways, and a lot less animal cruelty. Read more
It’s no surprise when pro-industrial agricultural organizations fight to keep the status quo. Yet, when the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) capitulated in July to trade organizations like the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) and their political representatives, retracting an endorsement of Meatless Mondays, a controversy began. The Meatless Mondays debate however isn’t the only example of how big animal agriculture is on the defense. In recent months similar controversies involving the National Pork Producers Council and the Animal Agricultural Alliance, while less publicized, seem to illustrate that big animal ag is losing their footing and plan to fight big time for their position.
Americans eat more meat per capita than nearly any other nation in the world, and it shows. Whether you’re a vegetarian or meat-eater, it seems all of us agree that it would be better for public health, the planet, and animals if the Standard American Diet (SAD) incorporated more plants and fewer animals.
Fortunately, that’s what’s starting to happen, as Meatless Mondays are catching on all across the country. From school districts to hospital cafeterias to restaurant chains, more Americans are experiencing the benefits of meat-free fare. And now a great video from the Humane Society of the United States explaining the why, who, and how of Meatless Monday has been nominated for a DoGooder award! You can vote for the Meatless Monday video the “Large Organization” category here. Watch the video: Read more
How many times have you checked a food package to see where it was produced, wondering about all the energy it took to get from the farm to your fork? Once an issue that few people pondered, the “eat local” movement has inspired conscientious consumers all over the country to contemplate how we can each do better by the planet at meal-time. The issue’s gone so mainstream that even TIME magazine published a cover story a few years ago entitled, “Forget Organic—Eat Local.”
Well, according to a recent Harvard Business Review article, we would be wiser to reconsider the amount of meat products on our grocery list rather than merely looking for how many miles our food may have traveled.
How much more concerned should we be? A lot. Read more
There has ostensibly been a dialogue among New York City legislators around food, as seen through Council Speaker Christine Quinn’s Food Works resolution, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio’s (at the moment dormant) NYC Foodprint legislation, and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer’s Blueprint for Sustainable Food System initiative. But there has yet to be a watershed policy that explicitly acknowledges and addresses the connection between “cool foods” and reducing the effects of climate change. Read more
I am not typically a fan of diet books, especially ones that promise radical results in a short period of time. My philosophy is gradual, graceful lifestyle changes that bring health into harmony in a sustainable manner. Not a battle with a restrictive diet. So when I saw the title of the book, The Engine 2 Diet: The Texas Firefighter’s 28-day Save-Your-Life Plan That Lowers Cholesterol and Burns Away the Pounds, I dismissed it as another get-thin-quick scheme. However, I knew the core of the E2 diet was eating meat and dairy-free and was curious what a Texas Firefighter (a description that invokes big portions of mostly meat to me) had to say about this meal plan that is gaining mainstream popularity. Read more