The Protests Smoke billows up between the sleek high-rises of the European Quarter in Brussels. The European milk farmers are angry, very angry. Many of them fear for their survival. After 31 years, the European Commission decided to end milk production quotas, to the dismay of many small and mid-scale producers. What with the Russian … Continue reading Quo Vadis, Quota? The EU Milk Protests
By Helena Robling It’s always sensitive to touch upon people’s meat consumption. As a topic for discussion it’s comparable to religion or party politics, everybody has an opinion, standpoints are usually quite firm and not seldom extreme. Saying YES or NO to meat can be as decisive for social identity as religious or ideological convictions, … Continue reading Going controversial about the burger bind: how about a meat tax?
As I was standing up from my desk yesterday at noon, took a stretch and packed my sandwich in my bag, I was so excited to get outside and see something different. I’d seen that Via Campesina Europe was organizing a “Farm in the City” event on Place Luxembourg, one of the main squares at … Continue reading A Farm In The City: Via Campesina Event Review
Heya! After some well-needed rest and recovery in the Swedish countryside, I’m back in full strength and with a gem in terms of outreach on animal welfare: welcome to the MEATRIX. This is a funny, yet relevant way of succinctly outlining the problems with factory farming and to point out solutions consumers can pursue to … Continue reading I’m Back! With… The MEATRIX
Faithful readers may remember that I already wrote once about Dr. Temple Grandin, but when Rianna from Masters-in-Special-Education.com reached out and asked whether I wanted to share their infographic, I was more than happy to oblige. And hey, I learned so many new things as well! Fun fact – she got honorary degrees from two … Continue reading A Deeper Look at Dr. Temple Grandin
Hey there! I’m currently on vacation in Iceland, so original blogposts will have to wait until after Easter, but thankfully I have a couple of infographic submissions by readers that have been laying on my backburner for quite some while, and which I am happy to share (though for the record I don’t necessarily agree … Continue reading Factory Farming – A Health Risk?
Have you heard of Temple Grandin? I must have been living under a rock or something because I had no idea about her and her amazing achievements – including designing equipment used in more than half of all American slaughterhouses that contributed to great steps forward in animal welfare. She also got a doctorate, is associate professor of animal science at Colorado State University, published several books and her life was recently given tribute in a feature film – all that in spite of (and some of it even thanks to) having been born on the far end of the autism spectrum.
This trailer gives a great overview of her life – and what a life it is!
Sometimes, when I raise issues like animal welfare in our agricultural economics classes, I feel like “that” person. You know, the PETA-supporting, tree-hugging, naive, doe-eyed idealist that people expect to sing kumbaya next. In ag econ, we care about efficiency. Optimal economic decisions. If you cannot survive as a small producer, you are clearly not … Continue reading What Are You Willing to Pay for Cheap Meat?
In anticipation of this past weekend’s festivities, the animal welfare organization PETA, known for its rather radical actions and stances, decided to convince a different clientele than usual of the benefits of turning to Tofurkey instead of the real deal: children.
Every year, the organization takes advantage of the holiday to launch a wide-spread campaign, complete with tv ads like the one below, the distribution of little gravestones that children would be able to put on the dinner table, and ads like the one above.
Says PETA Executive Vice-President Tracy Reiman:
“Kids love animals, and if they thought about how turkeys feel pain and fear, just as dogs and cats do, they’d trade in their drumsticks for Tofurky in a heartbeat. This Thanksgiving, families can give all animals something to be thankful for by sticking to humane, delicious vegan meals.”
Having talked about marketing to children before, this poses an interesting moral question that I considered for a while – how ethical is it to target such awareness/marketing campaigns with a particular message at children?
Sooooo guess who I had the honor to hear speak yesterday? Allan Savory!
He is the founder of the Savory Institute and a man on a mission to convince the world that livestock could be the solution to, not the cause of, land degradation and desertification. His TED-talk here is a perfect representation of his idea and also his quietly convincing presentation style – which I got to know in depth today at an event at SLU called “Holy Cow!” on his idea of Holistic Management of soils, in particular holistic grazing practices, and their practical application.
This video gives even more infos about the Holistic Management concept, but I’m not going to just sit here and let you watch videos, now am I? My friend and I had so many questions – many of which were answered mid-session – that I thought a Q&A style post would work really well here. So here goes: