American Farms Fume Over Pro-Vegetarian Blog Post

The American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) is fuming over a post on the EPA’s blog, “Greenversations.”

The controversial post was written by an EPA intern, Nicole Reising, who cited environmental concerns as one of the (many) reasons she chose to become a vegetarian.

Apparently, the AFBF — who said the EPA should “control their blog space” — is upset that an agency of the government would allow a completely VALID testimonial for vegetarianism on it’s blog — and even a lot of the blog’s commentors are questioning Nicole’s information. One even said her blog lacks “professionalism.”

I’m here to defend the idea that the environment is a totally legit reason to give up meat. Especially factory-farmed meat. And if Nicole’s post wasn’t “professional” enough, here are a few stats from sources most people consider pretty darn credible:

The country simply has more dung than it can handle: Crowded together at a new breed of megafarms, livestock produce three times as much waste as people, more than can be recycled as fertilizer for nearby fields.That excess manure gives off air pollutants, and it is the country’s fastest-growing large source of methane, a greenhouse gas. The Washington Post

Livestock are one of the most significant contributors to today’s most serious environmental problems. Urgent action is required to remedy the situation.Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations

The environmental impact of growing so much grain for animal feed is profound. Agriculture in the United States — much of which now serves the demand for meat — contributes to nearly three-quarters of all water-quality problems in the nation’s rivers and streams, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. — The New York Times

There have been hundreds of articles and countless research done on the subject of meat vs. the environment — and an overwhelming amount of evidence shows that factory farms are a huge detriment to the health of Mama Earth. Just a week ago, millions of gallons of cow waste (read: poop!) flowed into a river in Washington when a dike couldn’t hold back the manure any longer.

Unfortunately, scenarios like this aren’t unique. And it’s not just cow poo that’s invading our environment — a Rolling Stone reporter chronicled the workings of a pig farm, and noted that, to alleviate the massive lagoons of pig feces surrounding the farm, the farmers will actually SPRAY THE POOP INTO THE AIR, onto the surrounding fields. Umm…gross! People have even died from drowning in the thick, quicksand-like lagoons of toxic pig waste sludge.

And Jonathan Safran Foer, who extensively researched both factory and family farms for his recent — and quite brilliant — book, Eating Animals, calls factory farms “radically unsustainable.” John Robbins (of the Baskin Robbins legacy) wrote in his book, Food Revolution, that although you need 5,000 gallons of water to make just 1 pound of meat, you’d need only 25 gallons for 1 pound of wheat. A meat-eating diet requires more than 4,000 gallons of water per day. But a vegetarian diet? Only 300.

Most of these statistics have to do with farming on land, yet fishing is also very environmentally destructive. A new global study found that 90 percent of the world’s large fishes have disappeared from the oceans in the past 50 years because of industrial fishing.

Folks, please consider these facts when shopping for your next meal and, for the environment and everything living in it (including humans), please adjust your eating habits accordingly before we’re all drowning in the waste of our beloved meat.

You can also read Heather Moore’s post on “Eating As If The Earth Matters”.


photo from woodleyworkswonders on Flickr


Anne H.
Anne H6 years ago

@ Past Member, thanks for the link. I sent a contructive compliment to the EPA re. Ms. Nicole. I think we could do with more honesty really. I want the government to give me the information/tools to make my own decisions. I do not want the government to give the the information as slanted by those making money from my decisions (meat, soda, dairy....) Especially when this harms my health or bottom line.

I've found being vegetarian is more difficult than not because of my many reasons but because of those who are not open to it. Before you blast those who have made this choice do your research. Any one box checked "yes" of many reasons is enough for a person to give it a try. After educating yourself, not defending-give it a try. It is not easy to let go of what our family used to bond w/ us, commerials expound, lobbyists manipulate and society supports but that does not make it a bad decision. Commercial farming does not seem to have any positives other than profits & for many being vegetarian is the way they choose to handle this, it is something.

Many countries have factory farms & many eat too much meat. I travel & as a vegetarian have trouble finding meat free food. Parts are in everything, even vitamins. The US needs to stop beating themselves up with the over indulgence. Start being an example, & of course stop over indulging ;).

Ming C.
Ming C.7 years ago

we must try to feel how we will feel if we are made for eat/ please never destroy or kill for your self greedy desire and taste. like we want happiness and love they[Animal] are also running after this.

Daniel M.
Past Member 7 years ago

1) The decision of the United States Congress to pass the 1937 Marihuana Tax Act was based in part on testimony derived from articles in newspapers owned by William Randolph Hearst, who, some authorsTemplate:Http:// stress, had significant financial interests in the forest industry, which manufactured his newsprint.
2) Hemp paper threatened DuPont's monopoly on the necessary chemicals for manufacturing paper from trees and hemp fiber cloth would compete with Nylon, a synthetic fibre, that was patented in 1938, the year hemp was made illegal It is often asserted in pro-cannabis publications that DuPont actively supported the criminalization of the production of hemp in the US in 1937 through private and government intermediates, and alleged that this was done to eliminate hemp as a source of fiber—one of DuPont's biggest markets at the time. DuPont denies allegations that it influenced hemp regulation.

3)Hemp for Victory is a black-and-white United States government film made during World War II, explaining the uses of hemp, encouraging farmers to grow as much as possible.


Daniel M.
Past Member 7 years ago

[show]Typical nutritional analysis of hemp nut (hulled hemp seeds)[19]
Calories/100 g 567
Protein 30.6
Carbohydrate 10.9
Dietary fiber 6
Fat 47.2
Saturated fat 5.2
Palmitic 16:0 3.4
Stearic 18:0 1.5
Monounsaturated fat 5.8
Oleic 18:1 (Omega-9) 5.8
Polyunsaturated fat 36.2
Linoleic 18:2 (Omega-6) 27.6
Linolenic 18:3 (Omega-3) 8.7
Linolenic 18:3 (Omega-6) 0.8
Cholesterol 0 mg
Moisture 5
Ash 6.6
Vitamin A (B-Carotene) 4 IU
Thiamine (Vit B1) 1 mg
Riboflavin (Vit B2) 1 mg
Vitamin B6 0 mg
Niacin (Vit B3) 0 mg
Vitamin C 1.0 mg
Vitamin D 0 IU
Vitamin E 9 IU
Sodium 9 mg
Calcium 74 mg
Iron 4.7 mg
About 30–35% of the weight of hempseed is hempseed oil or hemp oil, an edible oil that contains about 80% essential fatty acids (EFAs); i.e., linoleic acid, omega-6 (LA, 55%), alpha-linolenic acid, omega-3 (ALA, 22%), in addition to gamma-linolenic acid, omega-6 (GLA, 1–4%) and stearidonic acid, omega-3 (SDA, 0–2%). Whole hempseed also contains about 25% of a highly-digestible protein, where 1/3 is edestin and 2/3 are albumins. Its amino acid profile is close to "complete" when compared to more common sources of proteins such as meat, milk, eggs and soy.[20] The proportions of linoleic acid and alpha-linolenic acid in one tablespoon (15 ml) per day of hemp oil easily provides human daily requirements for EFAs. Unlike flaxseed oil, h

Daniel M.
Past Member 7 years ago

Hemp seeds contain all the essential amino acids and essential fatty acids necessary to maintain healthy human life. The seeds can be eaten raw, ground into a meal, sprouted, made into hemp milk (akin to soy milk), prepared as tea, and used in baking. The fresh leaves can also be eaten in salads. Products range from cereals to frozen waffles, hemp tofu to nut butters. A few companies produce value added hemp seed items that include the seed oils, whole hemp grain (which is sterilized by law), hulled hemp seed (the whole seed without the mineral rich outer shell), hemp flour, hemp cake (a by-product of pressing the seed for oil) and hemp protein powder. Hemp is also used in some organic cereals, for non-dairy milk somewhat similar to soy and nut milks, and for non-dairy hemp "ice cream

Within the UK, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has treated hemp as purely a non-food crop. Seed appears on the UK market as a legal food product, and cultivation licences are available for this purpose. In North America, hemp seed food products are sold, typically in health food stores or through mail order. The USDA estimates that "the market potential for hemp seed as a food ingredient is unknown. However, it probably will remain a small market, like those for sesame and poppy seeds."...... GOOGLE HEMP, GO TO WIKIPIDIA

Wini A.
Wini A7 years ago

I was forced to vote no again because of an ill-conceived questions. I eat a vegan diet purchasing my food at local farmers markets. I have already heeded that warnings and adjusted my eating habits. Do I believe that Americans need to adjust their eating habits, yes. I don't what more I can do to adjust mine in light of the article which was very good.

Erika L.
Erika L7 years ago

Not all meat is hard on the environment, but we need to learn to be as responsible as possible in our eating habits.

Leigh Anne Burnette-Turne

Here, here!!!! I'm vegetarian because I'm in strong protest over factory farming. I look forward to the day when it is finally outlawed!!

Teresa Wlosowicz
Teresa W7 years ago

It's money that rules the world...

Pat M.
Patricia M7 years ago

I am giving up BEEF