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The Hamburger Issue

The food industry is a notorious contributor to global warming. The process for many mainstream meat suppliers can be a system diluted with inefficiencies.

For example, genetically modified crops fed to animals which are often also genetically modified to grow and mature faster, and are given large doses of antibiotics which are never naturally present in their biological systems. Sometimes the animals are kept in deplorable conditions (as seen in the popular documentary “Food, Inc.”, which the author highly recommends for further information, as it was one of the main sources for this article.).  In the documentary, cows were seen standing up to their ankles in their own fecal matter, and chickens stuffed into large, dark buildings with no windows, nor room to stand let alone walk about.

If you are lucky enough to have a local supplier of meat or butcher’s shop, hold onto it. Often locally produced meat that has been able to walk around in the sunlight, eating grass and cared for by workers payed fairly, is much more environmentally friendly than that mentioned before, as well as ethical and sustainable.

If, however, this isn’t available in your area, some good questions to ask regarding the brand and meat is “How many miles did this travel to get to my plate?”, “Was it raised humanely?”, and “Did the farmers and workers get payed a just amount?”

Of course, the other option is to stop eating meat and dairy products altogether. The average vegan saves approximately 1200 pounds of cO2 per year that would otherwise be released into the atmosphere.

Sources:
– ‘Ecoholic’ By Adria Vasil
– ‘Food, Inc.’ Directed By Robert Kenner, 2008

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