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Manzo dalle foreste tropicali - due diversi punti di vista sulla situazione.

Le catene di fast-food vengono spesso accusate di essere responsabili per la deforestazione in America Latina. Quest’affermazione non è esattamente corretta, e ripeterla in continuazione ci mette in cattiva luce, dal momento che carnivori informati possono confutarla facilmente.

La situazione è la seguente: in tutta la regione, ma in particolare in Brasile, i governi, cercando di saldare dei debiti soffocanti, vendono, o meglio, svendono, appezzamenti di terreno a coltivatori purché questi facciano qualcosa per sviluppare l’area. Il modo più economico per ottenere questo risultato è disboscare ed usare il terreno come pascolo per il bestiame.

L’allevamento del bestiame è dunque una delle cause principali della deforestazione. Nonostante ciò, le catene di fast-food non possono essere incolpate: come ogni carnivoro informato può confermare, la maggior parte del bestiame sudamericano ha qualche malattia alla bocca o agli zoccoli, questo fa sì che la loro carne non possa essere venduta, e di conseguenza il terreno destinato alla loro alimentazione è semplicemente sprecato.

Come conseguenza, la regione amazzonica è costretta ad importare carne di manzo, inoltre, la terra delle foreste pluviali è talmente povera che è adatta all’allevamento solo per pochi anni. Un ottimo libro su questo e su altri argomenti relativi ai problemi delle foreste pluviali è The Fate of the Forest di Susana Hecht e Alexander Cockburn.

Altre fonti indicano che, mentre il Sud America IMPORTA bestiame (ignorando le grandi quantità di prodotti a base di carne esportati dall’Argentina e dal Brasile verso gli Stati Uniti), l’America centrale esporta bestiame vivo negli USA. Queste mucche, appena passata la frontiera, diventano animali prodotti negli Stati Uniti.

Another important aspect to this is that soya cattle feed, grown on rain forest plots, is exported in huge quantities to feed the cattle in other countries. It is not possible to say that the beef burgers in the U.S. are not directly or indirectly responsible for the destruction of the rain forest. It is not possible to say that the U.S. imports NO beef from the rain forest.

Anche se la mucca in questione non è mai vissuta dove un tempo c’era una foresta pluviale, è molto probabile che il cibo che ha mangiato venga da lì.

Are most vegetarians liberals or conservatives?

from a reader in Australia:
Depends on what country you're talking about. "liberals" in australia are like "conservatives" in the United Kingdom. Generally, it is impossible to make a distinction based on politics, but people active in "Green" political parties are perhaps more likely to be vegetarian.

from a reader in the UK:
Who cares?

What does the religion says about vegetarianism?

See: Religion and Vegetarianism for articles on all major religions.

Indice FAQ

Nomi di animali e nomi di alimenti a base animale.

Un equivoco comune e su cui spesso i vegetariani fanno molta confusione, è l’uso, nella lingua inglese, di pig/pork (per maiale), calf/veal (per vitello), cow/beef (per mucca), sheep/mutton (per pecora) ecc. e che questo uso abbia qualcosa a che vedere con il fatto che i carnivori cercano così di fingere di non mangiare animali. La ragione, però, non è questa.

Nell’Inghilterra medievale i contadini erano di origine anglo-sassone, mentre l’aristocrazia era normanno-francese, questo in seguito alla conquista di Guglielmo il Conquistatore (Normandia - Francia) nel 1066. L’aristocrazia obbligava i contadini a prendersi cura degli animali, ma raramente permetteva loro di mangiare carne (per ulteriori dettagli cfr. Food in England).

I contadini chiamavano gli animali con i nomi anglosassoni - pig, calf, sheep ecc.-, mentre gli aristocratici, che mangiavano la carne, usavano nomi francesi per gli stessi animali - porc (pig), veau (calf), boeuf (ox o bullock), mouton (sheep).

I termini francesi si sono anglicizzati leggermente nei secoli, ma la distinzione tra gli animali e la carne da loro ottenuta è tuttora viva in ogni paese anglofono. Gli animali che non venivano generalmente mangiati dall’aristocrazia normanno-francese, ad esempio i polli (chicken), i tacchini (turkey), i conigli (rabbit) ecc. hanno un unico nome per l’animale e per la carne.

Is it possible to be a vegetarian with a partner who is not?

from a reader in California:
I have been a vegetarian for 14 years with a non-vegetarian husband.
I think that our dietary differences do not cause a problem because we respect each other's position. He does not demand a meat course for every meal, and I do not denigrate him for choosing to eat meat.
At least once a week I offer to go out to dinner so that he may have meat. (He doesn't take me up on this as often as he used to because we got a satellite dish and subscribed to NHL Center Ice. Hockey can be brutal, but it's not as bad as the slaughterhouse.)
I keep some frozen meat-based entrees on hand and he knows that whenever he would like to supplement my vegetarian meal, I will make no comment about his choice.
My husband has never complained about my being a vegetarian, and has defended my choice to others who mock vegetarianism. In return, I never put him down for remaining a carnivore.

from another reader:
I have been a vegetarian for about 10 years, and am marrying a person who loves meat. My basic stance on my vegetarianism is that it is my choice - every day I make the choice to not eat meat. I do not judge people who chose differently since I have always hated being judged for my choice (is there anyone else who has had to defend their choice to complete strangers?). As a matter of fact, I don't even mind cooking meat for my sweetheart (although my repetoire is limited since I haven't done it in so long). I have long since labeled my choice as one of consumption - I chose not to eat anything that died (and once had a face). If I cook for him, and don't eat it, then by my standards, I have not done anything wrong.

from a reader in South Carolina:
For me its not really feasible to date or be romantically involved with someone who eats meat. At least in that I've never had it work out. My beliefs about the social, ethical, and environmental problems associated with meat consumption are deepset. Most of my friends are meat eaters and this doesn't bother me. But when it comes to romantically loving someone, its difficult for me to do so without agreement on these issues. In the part of the world where i live, this basically traslates to not dating anyone, but i'm content with that.

from a reader in Australia:
I have lived happily for more than 7 years with my non vego partner. It is an interesting situation for me because not only is he a dedicated meat lover so are all his friends and family! (Some relatives work in the slaughter industry) So am I living a contradictory life and compromising my belief system? Or am I an ambassador for Vegetarians? It would certainly be easier if I had a partner who was vego too. But then again ,if you have chosen to be a vegetarian you will find that alot of things in your daily life become irreversably complicated. If you conduct yourself with integrity and conviction you will be surprised at what you can achieve!

How will becoming a vegan affect sex drive?

from a reader in the UK:
Why not try it and find out?

Is it true that vegetarians lose sexual desire?

from a reader in the UK:
Sure, that's why vegetarian couples never have any children...

You're just one person. How is that going to stop animal cruelty?

from a reader in the USA:
As with any great cause, change happens one person at a time. If we live by example, others will follow, and they in turn will influence still others. There is a ripple effect that can one day change the world. But what if we were to influence no one? By practicing harmlessness and nonviolence, we can sleep at night with the knowledge that not a single animal had to suffer and die for our selfish benefit.

from a reader in Portugal:
Well, Mr. Gandhi was certanly the first in his comunity, back in South Africa were he studied Law, to believe in a free India, without the exploitation of the Brits. Still, he got what he wanted - a free country.
On the other hand you may see your choices as personal, and not intended to 'change the world'. Some people are Vegan for themselves, that is, they care about the harm that they (no longer) do to animals and they feel fine about changing themselves - without having the immediate goal of 'changing the world'. Imagine that you are the only non-racist in your block/town/country. Would you change your way of seeing the issue just because you were alone?

Are there studies modelleding the potential impact of a pure vegetarian human population and its sustainability? i.e. could the whole world live without animals as food?

When I tell people I am considering being a vegitarian the responce I get is that "life feeds on life" and that animals in the wild kill for food. Why is it so wrong for humans to kill, animals, for food?

- answers wanted..

Traduzione Italiana di Alessandro Cattelan