The most inefficient method of producing food for humans is growing animals. It is reported to take 16 pounds of grain to produce 1 pound of beef, or 1 acre of land to produce 250 pounds of beef, whereas 1 acre of land can produce 40,000 pounds of potatoes.
The evidence to support this inefficiency is convincing as is the health evidence against meat consumption. One can also persuasively argue the environmental benefits to the planet and the humane advantages for the animals of plant based food.
Our jaded tastes and our habitual and customary food practices aside, what allows even the most civilized among us to eat without compunction or reservation, dead animals? Is it the fact that we are not involved directly in their slaughter or that the animals are “strangers” to us?
What distinguishes us in this practice from the animal kingdom? Have we not all seen the “nature” films where some poor hapless wildebeest is mauled and savagely ripped apart by a lion only be barbarously consumed “tartare” with blood oozing from every bite.
Surely as humans we can aspire to a greater nobility and compassion in the selection of our foods, especially on a planet that offers such rich and bountiful plant based foods. Is not our willingness to “kill and eat,” at its core, our brutal insensitivity and lack of love for the animal consumed? If not, why not just kill the cat and eat it?!