Beef industry not fans of Meatless Mondays, surprisingly

Moderation or abomination?: The Johns Hopkins Center for a Livable Future has called on Obama to re-institute "Meatless Mondays," something previous presidents did in wartime. The Center says it is making the request to promote better health and better environmental practices. The beef industry, of course, is not at all pleased, and ladling all sorts of b.s. at the logic behind it. Read Jill Richardson's an amusing imaginary dialogue with Big Beef's reasoning. (La Vida Locavore)

11 Responsesto “Beef industry not fans of Meatless Mondays, surprisingly”

  1. Ed Bruske says:

    There are about 3 million reasons to eat meat. That would be the number of years humans evolved eating primarily--you guessed it--meat. Of coarse, it should be raised on grass. Guess what? The human body only requires two macro-nutrients to survive: protein and fat. If we are going meatless on Mondays, I say we start a Carb-Free Tuesday. Carbs are making Americans fat, hypertensive and--aparently--especially stupid.

  2. My problem with "Meatless Mondays" is the same thing I have with all these sorts of programs. Rather than faking change, actually make it. Use a smaller plate, adjust one's diet. Eat meat, veggies, fruits, grains all in balance. This is the same as that lights out thing people did for an hour one night. They turned out their lights, felt like they "Saved the Planet" and then promptly went back to wasting energy the other 365 days a year. If they replaced one incandescent OR fluorescent light with an LED light they would make more change. If they adjusted their habits of energy use they would make far more difference.

  3. Eric Reuter says:

    Amen, Walter. Cute gimmicks have no place in serious policy-making, and serve to make the problem worse by creating a convenient straw man for opponents to bash.

  4. Bonnie P. says:

    Oh please, you cranky cynics! Meatless Mondays are not the same as the Lights Out thing. Trying not to eat meat for one day a week really can make people aware of how much meat they are eating in general, and encourage them to broaden their meal planning from hunk o'protein plus veg. Sure you don't think that Americans' current level of meat intake is a sustainable thing?

  5. To the critics of the Meatless Monday idea, I do not think that Obama or anyone else going meatless on Monday is going to solve anything. But I do think it's a non-threatening (to everyone except the beef industry) way to communicate the ecological footprint and health effects of factory farmed beef to the American people. That's an important conversation that needs to be had, and it's not happening right now. With all eyes on the White House, Obama going meatless would jump start the education about the impact meat has on health and the environment and then people can come to their own conclusions and do as they wish in terms of actual behavioral changes as a result. Increased public education could also shape support for future policy initiatives. That's the real value of this and it's an important one. All that said: I don't actually expect Obama to go meatless on Monday. Industry would be ALL OVER HIM for it attacking him, and I read today that he ate a burger.

  6. Bonnie, I definitely agree meatless Monday is better than the one time a year lights out for an hour gimmick. No question. It is a matter of frequency and habit building if that is what your trying to train - not eating meat. But rather than training people to be Vegan what we want to train is good balanced eating habits. The Meatless day is an extreme for people to oscillate against. So they go meatless on Monday and make up for it with three Big Macs on Tuesday. Ugh. Battle of the bulge was just lost.

    What we really want is to get people to dampen binging. A little meat in stir fry or shepherd's pie is good. Regular chowing down on huge hunkin' roasts served on a platter for one is probably going to be an issue. The occasional small pork chop with garnishes, stuffing and sides is good. Eating a whole side of bacon by yourself is really questionable. A small helping of chicken in a much larger dish is a fine way to dine. Gorging on a large roaster bird by yourself is not. A little fish, not the entire ocean full. Temperance[1][2], consistent temperance.

  7. Ed Bruske says:

    My objection is to perpetuating the false ideology that meat is bad for health, when just the opposite is true. Humans require only two macronutrients for survival: protein and fat. Carbohydrates are unnecessary. Yet by urging Americans to go "meatless," you are by default advocating consumption of more carbohydrates. The science just does not support you on that. Meat is one of the most nutritious foods we know. Carbohydrates--especially in the manner promoted and consumed in this country--are the root cause of an endemic of obesity, diabetes, hypertension and atherosclerosis. Still, it does matter very much what kind of meat we eat. People should be rejecting CAFO meats, stuffed as they are with corn and soybeans, and choosing pasture-raised meats instead. So maybe we should be promoting "Pasture-Raised Mondays," instead of going meatless. And if it's the environment we're worried about, we can better spend out time protesting Obamas insane ethanol policy, or coal-fired power plants, or deforestation of the Amazon. Removing our most nutritious food from the menu on enviornmental grounds is the height of folly.

  8. Joey Lee says:

    Meatless Monday is a non-profit initiative of The Monday Campaigns, in association with the Johns Hopkins' Bloomberg School of Public Health. We provide the information and recipes you need to start each week with healthy, environmentally friendly meat-free alternatives. Our goal is to help you reduce your meat consumption by 15% in order to improve your personal health and the health of the planet.

    The Meatless Monday movement seeks to improve health by replacing the meat with fresh fruits and veggies as well as more sustainable forms of protein. Unlike the lights out campaign, we seek to sustain the effort every Monday- all year round, creating a communal effort of people cutting back moderately for bodily and environmental health.
    Presidents Wilson, Truman and Roosevelt galvanized the nation with voluntary meatless days during both world wars. Our intention is to revitalize this American tradition. We’re spearheading a broad-based, grassroots movement that spans all borders and demographic groups. By cutting out meat once a week, we can improve our health, reduce our carbon footprint and lead the world in the race to reduce climate change.

  9. Adam says:

    How about fruit free Fridays? Tasteless Tuesdays? Wednesdays? Seafoodless Sundays? What other great gimmicks can we come up to promote meaningless things?

  10. Jacob says:

    Friday is already taken as a meat free day. Makes Monday redundant. But I always felt Monday was redundant. Yawn!