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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, so I dont want people being rude etc, but this is a genuine query/dilemma i have.

When I was young I wanted to be veggie, hated the taste of meat and when i was 10 insisted i was to be veggie. Mum tolerated it to a degree, but her friends didn't (I was fed meat sausages once but they told me they were veggie, they all laughed after i ate them, never forgiven her friend for that).

Over the years, and especially since I met hubby, I have eaten more meat (he is an avid meat eater). Now whenever possible we buy british, from the local farm shop and for example, chicken is free range - if we can't afford free range chicken we don't have it that month. We have our own chickens so know that the eggs we eat are from happy (spoilt) hens!

After reading this - Happy pigs make better bacon butties... so give them toys! | Mail Online today, its got me thinking again. Obviously animals that are happy probably do taste nicer. We can say (as in the comments) anything that likes to play shouldn't be eaten - but surely all animals like to play? Even my chickens require stimulation during the day (and they lay lovely eggs).

Now I do believe that we, as humans, were made to eat meat and vegetables, and that its part of nature. With that, we have a responsibility to make sure the animals are treated well and humanely killed.

As i have got older, I have tried going back to vegetarianism and actually struggle, and right now the one constant thing i have craved in this pregnancy is meat. Also even if I did try being veggie again, I would still feed meat to hubby and the baby (when she's weaning). But also I will continue to feed this to the animals.

So why is it ok for the dog and cat to eat meat, but not us? Am I being hypocritical if I tried to be veggie, even though I do love the taste of meat? I must admit its something I really struggle with, as i know if i ever had to kill my food i couldn't do it.
 

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Emma, I have to say I really enjoyed reading your post, and it seems that we share some viewpoints.

I am a meat eater, my sister is a veggie.

I also have pet chickens, so know how different the eggs take.

I also know what I am about to post will upset some people, so be warned!!

I find the whole mass produced meat industry, treating meat as just another commodity, disgusting.

I source my meat from local farms, where I know the animal welfare and can be happy that the animals have had a good life. This is what I need to do as a responsible meat eater. I NEVER buy supermarket meat. Buying meat the way I do is FAR more expensive, however, I make sure that I get the most from the meat but eating in smaller portions. (for example, we will get 3 or 4 meals from a chicken). I will also buy cheaper cuts if meat and slow cook.

As for killing myself, I have done this. I have hatched and raised chicks, kept the girls for my pet flock. I have tried to find good homes for my cockerels, but any that I can't have been dispatched once they started crowing and have gone for the pot. I went on a course to find out how to do this as quickly and humanely as possible. I am confident that when I do it, there is no suffering. That said, I cry every time afterwards. However, I know that the boys I raised had a longer, happier life than they would have done in a commercial setting... Intensively reared chickens live for only 42 days, even free range and organic only have an 8 week life.... They boys I had were about 3 months old when the deed needed to be done.

If you like seeing cows and sheep in the countryside then being a responsible meat eater is the way forward in my mind... As without the meat industry, these sights would disappear, as there would be no need to breed them. I would also urge people to eat British Rose Veal, as thousands of milk bull calves are shot at birth, but if there is a need for Rose Veal, then these bull calves would get several months of a good life first.

Back to my veggie sister, whilst she won't eat meat, she respects my meat eating, as it is done with careful thought and animal welfare at its heart.

I will always eat meat, as long as I can trace its provenance and welfare, the minute I can't, I'll have to turn veggie.

Sorry this is war and peace, but I wanted to share my full, honest and frank views.
 
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Emma, I have to say I really enjoyed reading your post, and it seems that we share some viewpoints.

I am a meat eater, my sister is a veggie.

I also have pet chickens, so know how different the eggs take.

I also know what I am about to post will upset some people, so be warned!!

I find the whole mass produced meat industry, treating meat as just another commodity, disgusting.

I source my meat from local farms, where I know the animal welfare and can be happy that the animals have had a good life. This is what I need to do as a responsible meat eater. I NEVER buy supermarket meat. Buying meat the way I do is FAR more expensive, however, I make sure that I get the most from the meat but eating in smaller portions. (for example, we will get 3 or 4 meals from a chicken). I will also buy cheaper cuts if meat and slow cook.

As for killing myself, I have done this. I have hatched and raised chicks, kept the girls for my pet flock. I have tried to find good homes for my cockerels, but any that I can't have been dispatched once they started crowing and have gone for the pot. I went on a course to find out how to do this as quickly and humanely as possible. I am confident that when I do it, there is no suffering. That said, I cry every time afterwards. However, I know that the boys I raised had a longer, happier life than they would have done in a commercial setting... Intensively reared chickens live for only 42 days, even free range and organic only have an 8 week life.... They boys I had were about 3 months old when the deed needed to be done.

If you like seeing cows and sheep in the countryside then being a responsible meat eater is the way forward in my mind... As without the meat industry, these sights would disappear, as there would be no need to breed them. I would also urge people to eat British Rose Veal, as thousands of milk bull calves are shot at birth, but if there is a need for Rose Veal, then these bull calves would get several months of a good life first.

Back to my veggie sister, whilst she won't eat meat, she respects my meat eating, as it is done with careful thought and animal welfare at its heart.

I will always eat meat, as long as I can trace its provenance and welfare, the minute I can't, I'll have to turn veggie.

Sorry this is war and peace, but I wanted to share my full, honest and frank views.
Really good post, I completely agree with you!

I am a non meat eater (I eat fish) but was vegetarian since I was 5 & was vegan for several years in my 20's. My OH eats meat so we always try to buy locally sourced, free range meat. As you, if we can't afford alot some months then we eat veggie meals - tbh my OH would rather eat less, better quality meat than have factory farmed for every meal.

Even though I don't eat meat I do agree with you regarding our countryside & in some ways I should also be supporting this by eating meat but I don't think I could actually do this now having not eaten meat for so long. I have no problem cooking meat, I cut up racks of ribs, sets of lungs, hearts, rabbits, etc for the dogs & actually quite enjoy this at times but don't think I could ever eat it again
 

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Cats are obligate carnivores - they need meat so there's no 'it's OK for them to eat meat' judgements - it's a necessity.

I don't quite understand the logic behind vegetarianism if I'm honest - veganism, I do understand, but I just find vegetarians to be a bit hypocritical. I think the milk industry is far crueler than the meat industry, but I see vegetarians happily chugging away milk while complaining that 'meat is murder'. It doesn't make sense from a logical or an emotional standpoint. It seems to be a fashion choice in the worst possible way - it's the easiest way for them to unburden their conscience.

Humans evolved to this point because we cooked and ate other animals - there's no creator laying down the law of what we should and should not eat - it just is. So it is a personal choice whether to eat meat, but I believe that the choice should be between eating meat (in fact all animal products) from humanely reared and treated livestock or not eating meat (animal products) at all. If that means that some people can't afford to eat meat then tough. We shouldn't be putting living, sentient beings through, what is essentially, torture and incredibly painful lives, just so some horrid, overweight, genetic throwback can speed-eat mechanically-recovered chicken carcass covered in batter or breadcrumbs morning, noon and night. It's truly disgusting - in so many ways.

When I have the space, I will keep chickens for their eggs and grow as much as my own food as possible. I'll also keep bees because we really need more of those. I think I'd draw the line at keeping other livestock for meat due to DEFRA's current rules and regulations, but if it was necessary then I wouldn't have a problem.

I can foresee a future where food prices rise to (proportionally) what they were during the war. Before we exploited Africa, southern America, China etc for their land. These places are soon going to keep most of their output for themselves because they need it. And we're going to be screwed. Especially when coffee becomes a true luxury - then they'll be riots.

I'm not saying that we should all turn into Tom and Barbara Good, but I do think we should all start taking a little more interest in using our gardens and allotments for producing food, rather than just lots of lovely flowers. And we really need to start living and eating seasonally again because the way we're eating now is just not sustainable.
 

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Emma, I have to say I really enjoyed reading your post, and it seems that we share some viewpoints.

I am a meat eater, my sister is a veggie.

I also have pet chickens, so know how different the eggs take.

I also know what I am about to post will upset some people, so be warned!!

I find the whole mass produced meat industry, treating meat as just another commodity, disgusting.

I source my meat from local farms, where I know the animal welfare and can be happy that the animals have had a good life. This is what I need to do as a responsible meat eater. I NEVER buy supermarket meat. Buying meat the way I do is FAR more expensive, however, I make sure that I get the most from the meat but eating in smaller portions. (for example, we will get 3 or 4 meals from a chicken). I will also buy cheaper cuts if meat and slow cook.

As for killing myself, I have done this. I have hatched and raised chicks, kept the girls for my pet flock. I have tried to find good homes for my cockerels, but any that I can't have been dispatched once they started crowing and have gone for the pot. I went on a course to find out how to do this as quickly and humanely as possible. I am confident that when I do it, there is no suffering. That said, I cry every time afterwards. However, I know that the boys I raised had a longer, happier life than they would have done in a commercial setting... Intensively reared chickens live for only 42 days, even free range and organic only have an 8 week life.... They boys I had were about 3 months old when the deed needed to be done.

If you like seeing cows and sheep in the countryside then being a responsible meat eater is the way forward in my mind... As without the meat industry, these sights would disappear, as there would be no need to breed them. I would also urge people to eat British Rose Veal, as thousands of milk bull calves are shot at birth, but if there is a need for Rose Veal, then these bull calves would get several months of a good life first.

Back to my veggie sister, whilst she won't eat meat, she respects my meat eating, as it is done with careful thought and animal welfare at its heart.

I will always eat meat, as long as I can trace its provenance and welfare, the minute I can't, I'll have to turn veggie.

Sorry this is war and peace, but I wanted to share my full, honest and frank views.
Very well said!

As well as British Rose Veal (which is delicious), I think people should get into eating more game and wild rabbit - there's no shortage of it and it's organic and happy and also delicious.
 

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Why do people not see fish as meat lol, its flesh is it not?
Anyway, I agree, I used to be veggie, but got ill with it, my body needs meat, regardless of what diet fanatics want to toss at me.
 

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I have been either veggie or vegan for a long time, in direct reaction to factory farming in the area I grew up. I think that if "Happy Meat" had been in shops back then I might have made different choices. I might not though, because although I have killed to eat, I won't be doing it again. I am happy to accept that this may be sentiment and not logic - and happy to allow "I don't want to" as a valid reason alongside other more reasoned ones. There are times when I buy meat for selected visitors and then I make sure it is as ethical as I can source.

I can't answer your question on dogs, but for cats I completely agree - a cat's biology needs meat so if you want to have cats living with you, you are obliged to give them meat. You don't have to give them meat from sources that aren't up to the standards you eat yourself (i.e. you can get UK-sourced organic cat food). I don't see a contradiction unless a person's vegetarianism is based on "all meat is murder", in which case keeping cats is inconsistent.

And yes, what have people got against fish? I think it is a hangover from a historical non-scientific view of fish, where cold-blooded and out of the sea equalled not a real animal.
 

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I was a vegetarian for 17 years, a pretty mean feat considering I do not eat fruit or veg at all, apart from potatoes. However, as I got older, the poor diet started to take it's toll plus my views were being challenged by getting into the whole gundog thing and having a relationship with a man who, by his own admissions, was a poacher in his younger days and saw nothing wrong with killing things to eat.

So, I started to eat meat again in my thirties but I still dont eat alot of it. I make sure that any chicken and eggs I eat are free range but I have to say i'm less stringent about where my beef comes from. I have started to think I will go to my local farm shop.

Anyway, I have to say I agree with WriterC. Now that I can look at vegetarianism from an objective POV, I do find it very hypocritical and think that veganism is the only true way to be cruelty free from an intensive farming stance. However, whatever we do, whatever decisions we make will make a negative impact somewhere down the line unless we truly go back to living off our own land.

I also agree with Waterlily - I never understood a veggie who still eats fish, that idea is lost on me! Fishing methods can be just as cruel as intensive farming methods. I only eat tuna on very rare occasions but always make sure it's line and pole caught.
 

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I find the whole mass produced meat industry, treating meat as just another commodity, disgusting.
I so agree with that and having talked to a few people from DEFRA it has really put me off eating meat. That is one reason why I have recently become a vegan the other reason is because I just don't like the taste of meat anymore and I don't really crave dairy products anymore.

I don't care if other people eat meat it's their choice and if you want to have a healthy diet meat is in moderation good for you. In saying that I really do think we need to treat animals better. I think that we need a global bill of animal rights. Battery farming though 'commercial successful' needs to end I believe this is going to be very hard to accomplish it is however absolutely necessary.

When I lived in Hong Kong when I was younger my mum witnessed a live dog being hung up and beaten to death. She called the SPCA only to be told that there is nothing that can be done because it is 'their culture'. Though I appreciate peoples cultures I don't think animals should suffer because of that. If we are going to keep eating meat as a civilisation then animals should be
1) Treated right during their short life
2) And be killed humanely
If food prices have to go up so be it. Sure people will complain but then again I don't think many people think about how badly these animals are treated. Again I don't believe people should stop eating meat I just think we need to treat animals better.
 

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I do and I don't understand vegetarianism.

In my rather scientific mind, we evolved as omnivores so it's necessity that we eat meat but, as with all things, it needs to be in moderation. Humans are only supposed to live off meat 3-4 times a week. Our society is so geared to the 'meat, carbs and veg' dinners that we think we must have meat every day of the week.

For me personally, I know meat every day isn't healthy (unless you have a large muscle mass due to exercise, which makes it a necessity), but I'm such a meat lover I want to eat it every day.

At the minute I try not to think about where my meat comes from, mainly because I'm a student living on £95 a month, so I can't afford to be fussy. Hopefully when I'm earning a good wage, I can source my meat properly and ethically.

I hope to switch to Quorn at some stage in my life too - I've heard so much praise of it and it'll be something different to add to my diet. I can't switch at the minute because it's far too expensive in my current budget.

I also carefully choose my cuts of meat. I will very rarely get chicken breasts because of the disgusting way in which the meat industry handles the chicken in order to get more meat on the breast.

So out of all that waffle, what I'm trying to say is that I do understand why people go veggie but I don't think I would be able to do it myself. Alongside this, I recognise that's it's important to source your meat carefully and take into consideration the living conditions of the animal before it was killed.
 

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I'm vegetarian & do find it a bit off that people consider us 'hypocritical'- I would love to be vegan, but I am a fussy eater at best & have a bad relationship with food as it is. At the moment going vegan would just make me ill & I have a responsibility to keep myself healthy for my family (both human & furry), so I'm doing the best I can, & I don't impose my food choices on anyone else. Maybe one day I will be able to make the transition to 100% veganism, none of us is perfect at the end of the day ;)
 
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I'm not veggie, but i do enjoy a good veggie curry or burger. But as a meat eater...i do like to get stuff that is not farmed etc, okay its food but it needs to of been reared right and happy...
:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Thanks everyone, its interesting seeing people have similar viewpoints.

I am writing this having just eaten roast beef (with home grown potatoes!) and it was good. I must admit we do buy supermarket meats (especially when cooking the dogs food) but buy british as although we aren't great, we are better than a lot of other countries. When we can buy from the farm shop we do.

I also think that meat needs to be seen as a luxury again, and not a necessity. And i refuse to buy cheap meat as you do taste the difference (I dont even buy that for the animals).
 

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Thanks everyone, its interesting seeing people have similar viewpoints.

I am writing this having just eaten roast beef (with home grown potatoes!) and it was good. I must admit we do buy supermarket meats (especially when cooking the dogs food) but buy british as although we aren't great, we are better than a lot of other countries. When we can buy from the farm shop we do.

I also think that meat needs to be seen as a luxury again, and not a necessity. And i refuse to buy cheap meat as you do taste the difference (I dont even buy that for the animals).
This is how I've brought up my family, they have a decent bit of meat now & then (a local free range roast chicken, or toad in the hole with local sausages), rather than meat every day:)

Oh, wish me luck by the way, I have bought myself almond milk to try, hopefully it will be a nice alternative to milk in my cup of tea;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
This is how I've brought up my family, they have a decent bit of meat now & then (a local free range roast chicken, or toad in the hole with local sausages), rather than meat every day:)

Oh, wish me luck by the way, I have bought myself almond milk to try, hopefully it will be a nice alternative to milk in my cup of tea;)
I tried soya milk and can't stand it! I would really like to, but i can't its horrid. I have some rice milk to try, but dot hold out much hope. Let me know what the almond milk is like!
 

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I tried soya milk and can't stand it! I would really like to, but i can't its horrid. I have some rice milk to try, but dot hold out much hope. Let me know what the almond milk is like!
I like the chocolate rice milk, I get small cartons of it to take in to college with me:)
 

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I've been vegan around 6 years. It's mostly for ethical reasons, partly for environmental reasons and partly for health reasons (the way i'm eating really seems to suit me). I'm not a particually fluffy or emotional person, i've killed probably dozens of animals and have occasionally worked as a farm hand. For me, I don't think my ideal view of welfare can ever be truely squared with raising animals for profit. I also think alot about ethics and with raising animals for food most people draw the line somewhere - some at not eating cats and dogs, some at horses and me at none at all because that's where my personal logic dictates I go. That's just my personal view and I don't lambast meat eaters because I don't think it's a black and white issue.

My dogs eat meat. It's ethically selfish of me to keep carnivores but carnivores they are (though 80% of their current diet would have been eaten by humans anyway).

I agree with the posters above with the need to make meat a luxury again. I wrote an essay a few years back on the challenges of the increased animal product consumption wordwide and the facts are scary to say the least. In the last two decades global meat consumption has gone up by 75% and is expected to rise exponentially with people from emerging economies wanting to eat more meat. The only way that demand can be met is through industrial, mass production livestock farms.
 

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I agree with the posters above with the need to make meat a luxury again. I wrote an essay a few years back on the challenges of the increased animal product consumption wordwide and the facts are scary to say the least. In the last two decades global meat consumption has gone up by 75% and is expected to rise exponentially with people from emerging economies wanting to eat more meat. The only way that demand can be met is through industrial, mass production livestock farms.
I think we'll find within the next few decades that food (not just meat) will not be able to sustain the number of consumers and therefore prices will rise a lot higher than today. My main gripe with people is that I don't mind them eating meat but I can't stand people who don't finish what they brought.

I hate the fact that an animal has died to put that food on the table and the consumer has decided that he does not want to eat that. Added to that the fact that we have a food shortage worldwide and people still seem to think it's alright to waste food. I believe I read somewhere that in Britain we waste 7 million tonnes of food yearly, supermarkets waste about 300,000 tones a year (thats all of the combined).

I think that as well as being more ethical with how we treat our animals we need to also reduce wastage.
 
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