So, hard is it may to be believe (given my penchant to post on my love affair with meat) I am a lapsed vegetarian. OK, it was when I was supremely young and terribly impressionable and it started with a book loaned to me by my neighbour (who I thought was the coolest woman on the planet). The book was Diet for a Small Planet by Frances Moore Lappe.
So I had two reasons to become a vegetarian:
1. Save the planet – since it really isn’t big enough to support a diet that centres on meat
2. Be a rebellious teenager and insist on being different and a massive pain-in-the-ass at dinner (that said, I did happily cook meals for myself)
In the end it was bacon….a crisp piece of bacon on a Sunday morning, slightly covered with maple syrup, next to some fluffy pancakes…that brought my inner carnivore back out into the open. I still believe the planet isn’t big enough to sustain a meat-centric diet, and I don’t eat meat every day, but I do really really love….a rare steak, a luscious piece of lamb, a crispy bit of crackling…and well, I could go on.
Because I don’t eat meat every day, I happily pay a bit more for something that has been sourced locally (when possible) and ethically farmed: meaning not only good to the animals but respectful of the land the animals are reared on. The big question is: can this model be applied to the whole world, is it realistic to expect countries struggling with food supplies to spend the extra time and money….I suspect the answer is no, but for those of us who can support this…we should.