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Can Veganism Save the World?

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Originally from the UK, Sami is creative director of The Change Creation, a brand strategy and design outfit working exclusively for entities that make the world better. He is a contributing author to TreeHugger, where he writes about compost, permaculture, clean energy and all things toilet-related. He lives in North Carolina with his wife, two daughters, a smattering of chickens and a big fat ginger cat. He believes the invention of pizza (vegan or otherwise) was mankind’s proudest moment so far.

Food writer Michael Pollan once famously wrote that the trick to sustainable eating is pretty simple: “Eat food. Mostly plants. Not too much.”

This advice has been catching on. Terms like “flexitarian” and “weekday vegetarian” have become common place, and many of us are finding that the easiest way to eat sustainably — even more so than buying local or organic — is to focus on ingredients lower in the food chain. Even Anthony Bourdain — who once compared vegans to Hezbollah — has conceded that we’d be better off if we ate less meat.

In other words, the meat-eating world is opening up to the benefits of animal-free cuisine.

Vegan Diets and the Environment

From the land needed to grow animal feed to the issue of nitrogen run-off from dairy farms, there is no shortage of “eco-crimes” that are attributable to meat and dairy. But ultimately much of the argument comes down to the basic laws of thermodynamics, as permaculture pioneer Patrick Whitefield explains:

“When an animal eats plant food, around 10% of the energy in the food goes towards growth and repair of the animal’s body, some 10% goes to fuel the animal’s activity, and as much as 80% is lost as waste heat. If another animal, such as a human being, then eats that animal, it consumes only 10% of the food value that was present in the original plant food.”

Al Gore may have conveniently omitted this topic from An Inconvenient Truth, but the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization has found that animal agriculture as it is currently practiced is one of the leading causes of global climate change – coming second only to the energy used in our buildings.

Nevertheless, the benefits of a vegan diet should not be overstated.

By eliminating a leading cause of global warming from their diets, vegans can rightly claim to be reducing their “carbon foodprint,” but the common vegan refrain that “you can’t be a meat-eating environmentalist” is a dangerous meme that serves only to divide an already fractious movement.

Individual Lifestyle Choice vs. Universal Model

So far we have focused on diets as individual lifestyle choices, but what happens when those lifestyle choices become cultural trends? Many – but by no means all — vegans argue that we should all be going vegan. And if that is the case, it becomes necessary to question what a vegan world would look like.

The answer to that question remains a significant unknown.

We’ve already seen that the average vegan eats more sustainably than the average omnivore, yet studies have also shown that on a societal scale, a diet that includes some meat and dairy can actually sustain more people than a purely vegan diet alone. The reasons for this are simple: humans don’t eat grass, and plants tend to thrive on poop. In other words, integrated animal husbandry can provide an efficient way to cycle nutrients back to farm fields, and it can produce food on poorer soils than vegetable production alone.

There are farms claiming to practice “veganic agriculture” free of all animal inputs, but those farms are few and far between, and the viability of a broader animal-free farming system should not be taken for granted.

I respect the fact that, for some people, all killing of animals is wrong, and meat will always be murder.  For these folks, discussing the relative carbon footprints of different diets must feel a little like arguing over the environmental impact of a drive-by shooting. But it’s also important for vegans to recognize that the vast majority of the world does not see the killing of animals as an ethical problem. In fact, there is significant evidence to suggest that the relationship between domesticated animals and humans was at least as much about co-evolution as it was exploitation.

Author Steven Kotler has described domestication as a process of “outsourcing survival needs,” where common farm animal species trade sustenance and/or work services in exchange for shelter, food and protection from the wild. For individuals within that species, the result is ultimately death. But from the perspective of the species itself, it has proven to be a wildly successful survival strategy – as witnessed by the vast number of chickens, pigs and cows alive today.

Vegans Are Part of a Larger Movement

Ultimately, I would hope that this post does not descend into a vegan vs. meat-eater shouting match. As my colleague Mat McDermott has argued, bringing an end to factory farming requires abandoning dietary fundamentalism. Vegans, vegetarians and conscious meat eaters can and will continue to debate the ethics of meat-eating and the farming of animals, and that is all to the good. But we must also learn to work together. We must build alliances among ourselves. In fact we must look beyond the “happy meat from happy animals” crowd too.

Ask your average consumer – no matter what their diet – whether farm animals deserve to be treated humanely, and you may be surprised at the answers. Just because someone buys factory-farmed foods does not mean they can’t be opposed to factory farming. It just means, like most humans, that they are a walking contradiction and that the grocery store is not the same as the ballot box.

Systemic problems require systemic fixes. If we can force the meat and dairy industry to pay for externalized costs, then meat and dairy will inevitably become more expensive. And as meat gets more expensive, people start eating more plants instead.

Our individual dietary choices can move the needle toward a more compassionate society, and they can help reduce our impact on the planet. But to reach their full potential, they cannot be seen as an end in themselves.

It is in combining our personal choices with political strategies and corporate activism that we can build a movement for real, lasting change. That movement must be inviting to everyone, no matter what they are having for dinner.

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  • saplingnaturals

    saplingnaturals from saplingnaturals says: Featured

    I'm lucky enough to live in a rural area where small working farms are still relatively common. It seems like a no-brainer that local meat and veggies from sustainable farms are ideal, but a vegan diet makes it's own kind of sense as well. Where I have always disagreed with my vegan friends is on the non-food issues, like clothing and furniture. Is it really better for the earth to wear a pair of faux-leather clogs made with petrochemicals than some handmade with local wool? What is the environmental impact of that? Clearly, it's a more complex issue than it would seem at first glance.

    2 years ago

  • gregpatt

    Greg Patt from WoodBoneAndStone says: Featured

    I have been a vegetarian all my life and a vegan for a time for practicality reasons (distance from the market place and lack of refrigeration). I was raised eating this way and for me the appeal of eating a dead animal is on a par with eating excrement. While I appreciate that the vegetarian diet may be superior it is not a matter of conviction as an issue of right and wrong. I am strongly opposed to any imposition by legislation or otherwise that would dictate what farmers can or can't grow, what can or can't be sold in a store or what children can or can't eat at school. As a leather worker I appreciate the carnivores among us.

    2 years ago

  • MagpieQuilts

    Ann from MagpieQuilts says: Featured

    I think the choice between a global diet and a local diet will have more impact on health, environment and sustainability. We hear all the time about factory farms, but vegetable choices are also managed by big corporations. Monsanto has the "rights" to a number of vegetables that are grown commercially for consumption by the consumer. Here's the list: http://us.seminis.com/products/hg_products.asp

    2 years ago

  • ArtifactsEtCetera

    Karen Daugherty from ArtifactsEtCetera says: Featured

    I think that if more people realized that "the grocery store" IS, in fact, "the same as the ballot box" a lot of things would change... and quickly. As a community, I am guessing that Etsyians (both buyers and sellers) tend to recognize that we all vote with every dollar we spend. When we spend money on things from big box stores that come from China, we are voting for mega-corporations and for China's booming economic success. When we buy local, we are voting for our communities. When we buy handmade, we are voting for individuals. The same goes for the economics of food. Support the companies, farms, restaurants, and individuals that produce food according to policies that you believe in and they will thrive. They'll then have the resources to expand and produce more... at lower prices. If they grow too quickly and the quality suffers, use your dollar to "vote" for someone else. It *does* matter and it *does* work... and it beats the heck out of using complicated and biased legislation to enforce change.

    2 years ago

  • HyacintheandHazel

    HyacintheandHazel says: Featured

    I'm all for a locavore lifestyle, it's better for people and for the environment. Some studies have shown that people who eat what is available locally are healthier. But telling people they should be vegans is wrong. Humans are omnivores, and have always been omnivores. There's no problem in *supporting* a person in their choice to be vegan but, telling people what the should and should not be doing is just arrogant. Considering the sheer amount of dairy farmers, many of whom aren't perpetrators so called "eco-crimes", depend on their family-owned and operated businesses. It's their livelihood and theirs isn't any less valid just because they're raising animals.

    2 years ago

  • MegansMenagerie

    Megan from MegansMenagerie says:

    Great post =)

    2 years ago

  • NobleTextiles

    NobleTextiles from NobleTextiles says:

    This is a great article! It gives us a lot to think about!

    2 years ago

  • VoleedeMoineaux

    Hillary De Moineaux from VoleedeMoineaux says:

    I don't think this is an appropriate ESTY blog topic.

    2 years ago

  • vintagejenta

    Sarah Wassberg from vintagejenta says:

    Why do we have to vilify meat eaters and attempt to turn everyone vegan (which, btw, is never ever going to happen)? Why can't we just all say "Yay vegetables!" and be done with it? I personally say "yay meat" too, but in terms of broader social change, "Yay vegetables!" is a more important message. Although in my opinion, corn and soy are NOT vegetables, at least not in the way most vegans consume them.

    2 years ago

  • BayMoonDesign

    Kathy Lindemer from BayMoonDesign says:

    Much food for thought! Interesting article!

    2 years ago

  • TheLittleRagamuffin

    Jenny from TheLittleRagamuffin says:

    I became an organic farmer because I believe in making sustainable choices in order to better this Earth for our children's children. I am not vegan nor vegetarian because I choose to support those hard working farmers who provide meat that is raised in a more humane fashion. Many friends question my decision, yet most of them are shocked to realize that even the organic produce they consume is fertilized with bone meal and blood meal. It is up to us to make informed decisions about what we consume, all the way from the farm to the table.

    2 years ago

  • volkerwandering

    Jess from volkerwandering says:

    If you look at the science though, humans would never have grown such big brains if we hadn't starting eating meat. The protein it provides is what has gotten humanity to this point! No doubt, we should all be eating more veggies, but to cut out meat entirely would just be silly. In my opinion.

    2 years ago

  • hippiejo74

    hippiejo74 from hippiejo74 says:

    Getting everyone to quit eating meat? Good luck with that! Personally - if we'd all just switch to LOCAL meats and veggies we'd help the world a ton. But making everyone vegan? Not a viable option.

    2 years ago

  • biophiliadesigns

    Danielle Toronyi from biophiliadesigns says:

    Excellent post. Hi Sami, fellow North Carolinian and permaculture proponent! It's incredibly important to bring awareness to our contemporary food system, wherever each of us fits within it. Questioning and rethinking our worldwide infrastructural systems has influenced my academic work re-designing/retrofitting urban/suburban regions into permaculture cities... would love to talk with you on it.

    2 years ago

  • ALEASHAB01

    ALEASHAB01 says:

    Great Post!

    2 years ago

  • compassionmalas

    Laura from compassionmalas says:

    I like this article because it brings up all sides of the issue in a well-thought out way, without saying there's only one solution. It's a complex subject and I appreciate the references given. These are issues we all think about.

    2 years ago

  • botamaki

    Bo Tamaki from botamaki says:

    I have been thinking along these lines for as long as I can remember. I am old enough that I can remember seeing more farmland... This post is great!

    2 years ago

  • mazedasastoat

    mazedasastoat from mazedasastoat says:

    Nice to see a balanced article addressing the problems caused by our current diet. Doubtless, soon it will degenerate to an arguement between vegans & meateaters, which will not only be a shame but will also miss the point of such an intelligent debate.

    2 years ago

  • bjhissong

    Bethany Hissong from thesmalloutdoors says:

    I have a lot of friends who were vegan or vegetarians that switched to Traditional Food diets because they weren't getting enough healthy fats and B vitamins. My mom got really sick when she tried to cut out meat. Check out the Weston A. Price Foundation for really good information on healthy diets that are founded on centuries of eating (before chemicals) and how crooked teeth, cavities and a bunch of other ailments are only found in modern times. I respect life greatly (are all these vegans also against birth control and abortion?) but I also think there is a humane way to raise the meat we eat and we can sustain the world on good farming practices and not industrial ag.

    2 years ago

  • PoleStar

    Jennifer Juniper from PoleStar says:

    I couldn't be vegan personally, and I don't think it is possible to bring up healthy kids on a purely vegan diet, but I also think it is good to be mindful and keep in mind being a good citizen of Earth when we decide what goes on the dinner table.

    2 years ago

  • mosswoodshop

    Justin and Kaylee Moss from mosswoodshop says:

    I don't believe that this world is meant to last forever, so ultimately, the effect that meat production has on the "earth" doesn't really make a difference for me. What does matter, though, is the quality of life that we can have and give our children by choosing a plant-based lifestyle.

    2 years ago

  • AvianInspirations

    Ashley from AvianInspirations says:

    Why does everything promoting veganism always end up so preachy?

    2 years ago

  • LitKnits

    Laura Sparks from LitKnits says:

    This is a really smart post and a timely topic. I appreciate the recognition that sustainability involves animals - whether we choose to eat them or not. I have vegan friends and I have hunter friends, and I appreciate the role of both.

    2 years ago

  • leftcoastglory

    shelley francis from leftcoastglory says:

    Thank you for an intelligent article. Here's to taking a few moments out of our busy lives to consider just what we put in and on our bodies. How we relate to our planet, and how sustainable is the lifestyle we choose. Before this topic devolves into veg vs meat, let us also be thankful that we can actually have this debate or conversation. For so many people on our planet, and even in our own country, having a choice of what we eat, and where it comes from, is a luxury.

    2 years ago

  • saplingnaturals

    saplingnaturals from saplingnaturals says: Featured

    I'm lucky enough to live in a rural area where small working farms are still relatively common. It seems like a no-brainer that local meat and veggies from sustainable farms are ideal, but a vegan diet makes it's own kind of sense as well. Where I have always disagreed with my vegan friends is on the non-food issues, like clothing and furniture. Is it really better for the earth to wear a pair of faux-leather clogs made with petrochemicals than some handmade with local wool? What is the environmental impact of that? Clearly, it's a more complex issue than it would seem at first glance.

    2 years ago

  • ladybumbleB

    ladybumbleB from ladybumbleB says:

    Excellent article. Doesn't sound preachy at all to me. "Vegans, vegetarians and conscious meat eaters can and will continue to debate the ethics of meat-eating and the farming of animals, and that is all to the good. But we must also learn to work together." A valid and unpreachy quote. I couldn't agree more.

    2 years ago

  • vynsimplicity

    Melissa Mulder from VyntageBlooms says:

    I will admit to being a little frightened when I read on the box of the chicken I was eating "made in China". ( I live in Canada) I think of everything else coming from China BUT not my meat! I am not a fan of boxed meat.. or Tubed for that matter. I once bought a tube of lean ground beef and when I opened the tube I found huge globs of Fat deposit's. Unbelievable, in the end I had sectioned off over 1 cup of pure fat from that tube (it was quite simple to separate since whole chunks of it looked like it had been squeeze through a icing pipe tube) . I felt ill and have not been able to purchase tube meat ever since.. yuck total gag reflex just thinking about it. Yes, I took pictures, yes I went back to the store, No they did not due a thing about it!! Vegan is not an option but locally sourcing your food is a great start! Thanks for the post!

    2 years ago

  • EllieChaos

    Elise Beck from EllieChaos says:

    I don't think telling everyone to eat vegan is appropriate for ETSY. Just another reason why I visit regretsy.com more than this site

    2 years ago

  • weezieduzzit

    weezieduzzit from weezieduzzit says:

    Veg/veganism isn't going to happen in our house (we seem to thrive on a paleo/modified gaps way of eating,) but I do agree that it's important to source responsibly raised meat. As a huge bonus, grass fed and free range meat tastes better!

    2 years ago

  • BJones130

    Becca from SoulCloudBeads says:

    thats nice that people are sparing unecessary animal eating, but hey there is absolutelynothing wrong with eating meat. We are not solely dependant on it and never should be . People are forgetting the world BALANCE . I eat meat and veggies and hey Ive even been a vegetarian before and i will always keep an open mind to healthy eating habits ... as should others

    2 years ago

  • cynthiathornton

    cynthia thornton from cynthiathornton says:

    Why is veganism a relevant topic on the etsy blog? I come here to find out about handmade items and how to promote them, not to see meat-eaters painted as the downfall of the earth. Let's stay on topic, folks.

    2 years ago

  • AlpineGypsy

    Heidi from AlpineGypsy says:

    Ahhh....another political article on Meat-eating vs. Vegans. I foresee many, many people 'sharing' their views on this one, LOL....Etsy, you sure like to stir it up, don't you? Well, it's definitely entertaining reading. I happen to agree with the author; I think both vegans and meat-eaters will continue to debate these issues, and it is a good thing. I'm glad people are talking about it, period. However, I do think that in general these articles seem to prompt very passionate comments on both sides and this kind of seems to divide people on this site. I'm not sure how I feel about it, regardless of what side people are on......

    2 years ago

  • SwingStationStudio

    Heather Hallberg from SwingStationStudio says:

    It seems like a lot of people read the title of the article, then jumped to comment! If you read the article, you see the author has presented a great article on food consumption, that is not preachy or judgmental. Many ETSY sellers sell vegan or vegetarian items, and EVERYONE eats, so I see no problem with this being a blog topic. If you are somehow offended by an opinion, don't read the article! Goodness, people. ETSY is a community with all types of people, all types of opinions, just like life.

    2 years ago

  • kittensmiaow

    Ro from cat2owl says:

    Woo well I'm a vegetarian, and I enjoyed this article.

    2 years ago

  • FountainheadWoods

    Craig Henry from FountainheadWoods says:

    What does this have to do with Etsy and selling handmade crafts? What is next, some other ultra-liberal screed about not living in individual homes and walking to work from the urban ghetto? Man us the apex predator and did not attain this position by munching on the lawn.

    2 years ago

  • Railin

    Mel from Cuteling says:

    I hope to soon be able to have a garden where we can grow a few veggies ourselves, and, more importantly, show my daughter how things grow, and how much better they taste when they come from your own, organic, garden instead of a shelf somewhere! That's how I grew up myself, and I really miss it ...

    2 years ago

  • flourishingagain

    Lacey from FlourishingAgain says:

    I like that the point is made that the animals that were eaten in the end traded certain death for certain survival. And that a moderate, balanced diet is what supports the most people financially. Integrated, careful animal husbandry helps nutrients get back to the earth too. And meat and meat by-products like dairy do provide essential nutrients to help human beings grow, develope, think. Balance is the key, not extremes.

    2 years ago

  • lindsayod

    Lindsay O'Donnell says:

    I've been a vegan for more than a few years now and I have to saw that my options have grown exponentially in the past few years! Being vegan has never been so easy or exciting! Find vegan recipes at www.lindsayisvegan.wordpress.com!

    2 years ago

  • groovyrooby

    groovyrooby says:

    lots of good food for thought here. i was a vegan for over 10 years. then i travelled a bit to places where veganism didn't really exist. people were poor with little food choice, they took me into their homes and shared what they had, and i decided that - for me - there are other values beyond "animal-free" that took priority. since then, i've started eating meat and dairy occasionally, but only from small farms i visit myself. it is more expensive, but it's more of a treat. this is all to say that the vegan vs. meat-eaters is treating a very fuzzy grey issue as black-and-white, while there are a lot of other important considerations to keep in mind. vegan diets aren't necessarily greener, either, when they include processed/out of season/long-distance-transported foods.

    2 years ago

  • xZOUix

    Zoui from XZOUIX says:

    Veganism CAN SAVE LIVES, that's the important part. Go Vegan!

    2 years ago

  • RisingSunRosaries

    Donna Capano from RisingSunRosaries says:

    Wonderful Wonderful Article!!!

    2 years ago

  • twigandleafbotanical

    kelly beth from twigandleafbotanical says:

    i live sustainably, eat organically, and am always kind to all creatures. i couldn't live any other way. there is a book by dr. melanie joy titled "why we love dogs, eat pigs, and wear cows: an introduction to carnism" that could put more into perspective for the skeptical.

    2 years ago

  • my2handsstudio

    Donna from my2handsstudio says:

    YEAH!! A sensible discussion on meat vs plant eaters. I am a meat eater who wishes to be a vegetarian, after watching the documentary FOOD,Inc. It is clear that a government controlled system exists in the meat industry and it was truly disturbing!!!!

    2 years ago

  • gregpatt

    Greg Patt from WoodBoneAndStone says: Featured

    I have been a vegetarian all my life and a vegan for a time for practicality reasons (distance from the market place and lack of refrigeration). I was raised eating this way and for me the appeal of eating a dead animal is on a par with eating excrement. While I appreciate that the vegetarian diet may be superior it is not a matter of conviction as an issue of right and wrong. I am strongly opposed to any imposition by legislation or otherwise that would dictate what farmers can or can't grow, what can or can't be sold in a store or what children can or can't eat at school. As a leather worker I appreciate the carnivores among us.

    2 years ago

  • christyfbrown

    Christy Anderson says:

    I welcome the discussion. I am already reading the handy cliches, "my aunt almost died from not eating meat". I've been a vegan for a couple of years now and enjoy good health. I think those that have health issues are eating vegan junk food which believe it or not is plentiful. You have to eat healthy no matter what "diet" you are following, that said, I am a vegan for ethical reasons. Animals are sentiment beings in the same way we are. All mothers care for their young. I do welcome thoughtful balanced discussion. For my part, I'll never agree with meat eaters but I respect those that want to look at it from all sides.

    2 years ago

  • maggiesraggedyinn

    Mary Robertson from MaggiesInn says:

    I am slowly becoming a vegetarian and feel so much healthier. I want to be healthier but I also cannot stand to see animals so badly treated. I grew up on a big farm and my father had respect for the animals that he cared for, as did all his children. Today in our fast paced world, the animals that we eat were given little kindness.. they were raised as a piece of meat... yet they had feelings. How can we expect to live in a healthy balanced world when we practice such cruelty?

    2 years ago

  • luxdivine

    Jessica Neil from luxdivine says:

    Love this post...I am a low fat raw vegan and have never been healthier or happier!!!

    2 years ago

  • lastingattachments

    lastingattachments from lastingattachments says:

    Three years ago my doctor suggested that I read the book "the China Study", hoping that I would consider a vegan diet and it would in return bring down my blood pressure. I picked up the book on the way home, changed my diet immediately and within less than two months my blood pressure dropped from 250 to 220, without meds. I only lasted a year and 1/2 as a vegan because ommitting dairy from my diet was very difficult as eggs, butter etc. are in almost everything! I did however remain vegetarian and have replaced drinking milk with rice milk, which I enjoy much more. I am here to attest that it can be done and I have no inclination to eat animal protein. My mouth waters to the aroma of veggies, as hard as it may seem to many. :-) I suggest that whom ever may be considering the change, read this book, it has turned my life around.

    2 years ago

  • thevicagirl

    VaLon Frandsen from thevicagirl says:

    I started to feed my family salads once or twice a week instead of hamburger, and man did our health improve. It is so much more healthly for you, and much better for the planet.

    2 years ago

  • HoneyBeeHolistics

    Melissa from HoneyBeeHolistics says:

    I believe factory farming IS a slap in the face to all who buy from the regular grocery store!! When animals are treated as they are in nature ex. room to graze on grass/bugs & not fed chemically treated, GMO corn & soy products, then they serve the purpose intended.....to be cycled back into this huge circle of life we are all involved in wether we admit it or not. GMO soy & corn products are used in so MANY products that cause health issues much greater than consuming meat from an animal who produces methane with its poop!! Veganism is another way for the big Carghill & Monsanto lovers to get more support for their GMO Chemical laden products in the hands of more Americans. Exactly what was said above.....BALANCE! BUY ORGANIC! BUY LOCAL! Spend a little more for the meat & veggies that are from your region so you can live a healthier life all around!!

    2 years ago

  • londonviaparis

    Jenny B from BasilandBones says:

    Eating less meat? Okay, i guess. Being vegan? No thanks. My sis-in-law is vegan and things suck for her. It's hard to find things she can eat, and when she does she's always starving. Animals by products are totally cool. Eggs? Chickens are going to drop em whether they are fertile or not. Cows need to be milked or their udders explode. bees make honey and honey is awesome. Don't see the problem. Nature is awesome and it provides for us, we should be thankful by taking care of it in turn. But that doesn't mean we can't eat some of it either.

    2 years ago

  • ourhousedesign

    Victoria Nicoll from ourhousedesign says:

    FINALLY people are realizing that being vegan is just better for you! It's not about having a scary agenda and throwing red paint on fur coats, it's what you're putting in your body and understanding where it comes from instead of turning a blind eye.

    2 years ago

  • Bmbyx

    Olga from Bmbyx says:

    University of Phoenix prohibits certain topics from the classroom discussions ( such as pro-life vs. pro-choice) because those are hot topics and always lead to a nasty outcome. I must agree with some other replies that this topic is too hot to be on Etsy. We are here to unite artists, yet posts like this divide people and leave a sour aftertaste in the mouth. There are two sides to every story. Leave it alone and focus on uniting people. We have enough drama in our lives to begin with.

    2 years ago

  • WishingCreek

    Amanda, Dot, Liz from WishingCreek says:

    Personally I think everything on this Earth requires balance. I am not vegan, but do find myself eating less meat, mostly because I am getting to point with all the issues meat and veggie wise with tainting from mass farming. I think the as a whole individuals and families would be better off, healthier, if they planted a garden and/or raised their own meat free of antibotics and such. If you are in an urban area get involved in community gardens, or plant in boxes. I could go on and on...good article btw.

    2 years ago

  • HugoC

    HugoC says:

    I am of Norwegian decent. I have O type blood. I doubt I could ever go full on vegan without literally getting so depressed that I would kill myself and or others. I have yet to hear a reasonable way to get around the high folic acid content of a high veg diet, or how to mitigate the effects of phytic acid on mineral absorption in the gut. Or the absence of carnitine in the vegan diet. I raise my own chickens/eggs and try to hunt or get local meats. I am getting a nutrition degree, and I will never recommend a vegan diet as healthier than some degree of being an omnivore.

    2 years ago

  • WishingCreek

    Amanda, Dot, Liz from WishingCreek says:

    Oh and note...Dot my mother, and my Dad, both raised on a family farm. Dad joined army and moved away, I can tell you from visiting up north through out my childhood the decline of the family farms, every year less and less, so sad. My fear is a world where no one knows how to put a seed in the ground, even if its means starving.

    2 years ago

  • uniquefabricgifts
  • redcordelia

    redcordelia says:

    Thanks for a well-rounded article that is respectful of everyone. I'm a mindful omnivore and I expected this article to try to shame me and my bowl of yogurt. Instead, I found a thoughtful point of view. Thanks!

    2 years ago

  • Tenacious333

    Rochelle Schloemer from SaintMarley says:

    Being vegan isnt just about the animals. Think about what those animals are eating, and all the chemicals that are going into these animals diets, giving the animals cancer. Which ultimately gives us cancer. In the 1920's cancer was 1 in 20 people now its 19 in 20 people. That tells you something. For the people that say you can raise a healthy child without feeding them meat thats pretty much wrong. You are saving their life ! I can go on and on. But I know that people who eat meat are going to eat meat no matter what anyone tells them. But go onto netflix there are a bunch of documentaries on there all about this kind of stuff, you will really learn something from them.

    2 years ago

  • sexyislanders

    Little Monkey says:

    The new movie Forks Over Knives is a great way to show people that being vegan IS evolution. It has been drilled into our brains to eat meat.

    2 years ago

  • megk8199

    Megan Morris from MadebyMegShop says:

    Some people are so touchy! I didn't hear the author advocating one way or another, just giving us a different point of view. Personally I would never go completely vegan, although I don't eat much meat anyway and I try to buy organic whenever possible. I enjoyed the article, and I'm glad I found it on the Etsy blog! :)

    2 years ago

  • genisepark

    Genise Park from genisepark says:

    Watch Forks over Knives, just another perspective. It is on Netflix.

    2 years ago

  • madewithhope

    Brittany from madewithhope says:

    I've been a weekday veg for over a year now and I love it, but I don't, by any means, try to convince meaties to change their diets. It's good to know that being a veg does have social justice benefits as well. Great article!

    2 years ago

  • MagpieQuilts

    Ann from MagpieQuilts says: Featured

    I think the choice between a global diet and a local diet will have more impact on health, environment and sustainability. We hear all the time about factory farms, but vegetable choices are also managed by big corporations. Monsanto has the "rights" to a number of vegetables that are grown commercially for consumption by the consumer. Here's the list: http://us.seminis.com/products/hg_products.asp

    2 years ago

  • MaeveBarton

    Caitlyn Maeve from MaeveBarton says:

    Pretty sure that nothing, even something as "extreme" as veganism, can save the world at this point. . .

    2 years ago

  • pamt4

    pamt4 says:

    Excellent article! Vegan diets can do a lot to improve the environment and our health overall. It is no longer considered "extreme" and many vegan restaurants and bakeries are sprouting up everywhere. There are many good places online to learn more and many, many vegan cookbooks out there! Go vegan, for your health, the environment and for the animals!

    2 years ago

  • thenestingmagpie

    Maggie Nichols from NestingMagpie says:

    I enjoyed this article. I thought it was balanced and fair and I'm glad to see it here on the etsy blog.

    2 years ago

  • TheInvintage

    Molly Green from TheInvintage says:

    Thank you for examining veganism critically! don't forget about where most of those soy beans come from! Monsanto is just about as bad as it can get....Food Inc. is a great documentary for those interested in these food issues.

    2 years ago

  • kschell13

    Kae Schell from TheSummertimeBlues says:

    The one thing that I wish the world could do is to be able to open our doors of perception. JUST BECAUSE YOU WERE TOLD SOMETHING FOR YEARS DOESN'T MAKE IT TRUTH. Wake up!!! We need to realize that we are being poisoned. Our food is full of hormones and "added nutrients"- why? Our water is contaminaminated with countless chemicals, most of which is sodium hypochlorite (bleach)- why? Our air is polluted constantly-why? The answer is because healthy people don't make "America" rich, sick people do. They need people sick so they're preoccupied with stress and medications! If they keep you sick and preoccupied, then it's hard for you to see the bigger picture. It's not a good feeling knowing that the government controls everything we do, eat, and drink. But its true. To not see it is ignorant and I'm sorry but the only way we can control our lives is to not be ignorant. Read, listen, learn as much as you can because knowledge is power and that is the only thing they can't take away from us.. Yet. But wake up please! Think about how a couple hundred years ago almost everyone believed the earth was flat, nowadays we laugh because we have enough knowledge now to know its round. Hey, maybe we've been wrong about what we eat too. Don't be in denial....just educate yourself before you come to naive conclusions

    2 years ago

  • Bmbyx

    Olga from Bmbyx says:

    Dear vegans: I was 27 years old, hight 5’4”, weight 95lb. Very active in sports and such when I was diagnosed with diabetes. Clearly, fat was not the problem here, it was genetics. I work with you and cater to your needs, but what about me? I cannot eat starchy vegetables such as potatoes, yams, carrots, tomatoes....... I cannot eat fruits or drink fruit juices because they are full of sugar, and I cannot drink milk (darn carbohydrates), forget about deserts (I sure do miss the chocolate ice cream). There is not enough grass for me to eat to compensate for the protein shortage........ Do you think I don’t know how to read food labels?............... Do you think I did not go to an endocrinologist and a dietitian? .........Do you think I did not have two high-risk pregnancies resulting in c-section with less than 30% chance of survival for the both of us because of my condition?.................. Do you think I enjoy shooting myself with an insulin pen? ..................Do you think there is any skin left on my fingers for a blood sugar test? .........................I cannot have pancakes for breakfast, I cannot have salad for lunch, and I cannot have pasta for dinner. ....................I have to have proteins. My dad had a stroke because of his diabetes................. I have to have meat in my diet if I want to see my 2 daughters get married, have children....Like I said earlier, there is two sides to every story ........................Think about it, being vegan is your choice based on your own circumstances, but I am not you, and you do not get to tell me what is good for my own survival.................................... I do not shove meat down your throat, but you still want to shove grass down my throat.... Leave it alone.

    2 years ago

  • BittyBolts

    BittyBolts from BittyBolts says:

    You go Olga! My heart goes out to you..God Bless. I can't imagine!

    2 years ago

  • scrappyrat

    Scrappy Rat Designs from scrappyrat says:

    Somehow the benefit veganism has for the animals got skipped entirely. Even so-called "humane" animal production steals animal's lives, severing all love/relationships they share with their companions, ending all that animal's hopes and ambitions. And why do we consider it humane to slaughter male layer chicks shortly after they get their baby fuzz? No farmer wants a male layer chicken. The males are killed with barely a chance at life to produce even the most "humane" eggs. Is a few days to a month or so really a "good life"? And even if someone has lived well for a few years, does that excuse shooting them/cutting their throat/hammering them in the head? So called "humane" animal production isn't something that can be done on a scale that would allow humans to continue to eat animals and animal products at anywhere near the current rate (or likely, even half as many animal products as we do now.) Ultimately, when one being keeps another for the purpose of making money, money will always win over the welfare of the kept. Can these animals receive individualized veterinary care while their owner is still turning a profit from their sale? How much land can we really offer each animal without destroying even more wildlife habitat than we do already? It will always take fewer resources (land, water, etc.) when we eliminate the middleman, so to speak, and eat plant foods without processing them through an animal. As far as fertilizer is concerned, composting our food waste is also a viable option. It can be done much like our current recycling programs, with citywide pick ups (it's been done in some cities already, and vegan composting is incredibly easy since it's all plants--no sorting! ;)) "Humane farming" of animals isn't the answer when it comes to providing sustainable, animal friendly food, since from where I'm standing, it appears to be neither. Better to quit eating animal products (or cut down as best you can) to ensure a better world for all beings, rather than switching to so-called "humane" animal products. And if you don't think cutting back helps, 100 people cutting down their animal product consumption by a third is as good as 25 people going vegan. A single family cutting back can make a huge difference. Veganism isn't just about liking vegetables. It's about protecting the animals around us from being treated like commodities, and from the horrors that follow as a result. There was a long time when the majority of people didn't think women should be treated as anything but possessions, too. I don't agree that we should accept that the majority currently feels the same way about animals as an excuse to give up our hope for change.

    2 years ago

  • elizasteindesigns

    Eliza Stein from elizasteindesigns says:

    I really enjoyed the calm, rational tone of this article. Not preachy at all! The human body is a complicated thing and it's impossible to speak in general terms about whether a vegan, vegetarian, omnivorous, etc. diet is the best for all of us. Also, each of these diets can be made healthy or unhealthy. I could prattle on humorlessly about it for hours, so instead I'll just say this: Coat a frying pan with olive oil. Drop in a big portobello mushroom cap, sprinkle it with coarse salt. Let it sizzle until browned on both sides, place it in your favorite kind of bun, and top with ketchup, mustard, relish, etc. Good eatin'.

    2 years ago

  • BlueMoonBotanical

    Monica Rutt from rootsandflowers says:

    Great article. Personally i follow a traditional diet and buy all my animal products and vegetables from local farms or raise them myself. I have been vegan and vegetarian and found that for my body and the environment eating high quality LOCAL, SEASONAL foods makes the most sense. I don't understand how vegans living anywhere in the north can claim they eat an environmentally sound diet. Most vegan diets require you to get your fats and proteins from things like avocados and coconuts that are not local or ever seasonal up here. But, food is a sensitive subject and can also be a fun journey to find out what works best for you. Great article!

    2 years ago

  • katrinaalana

    Katrina Alana from KatrinaAlana says:

    I like how the article is balanced, well rounded and respectful of everyone's diet and beliefs. It makes me take a closer look into eating vegetarian meals on certain days of the week or to incorporate more vegetables and less meat into our diet to help the environment and be more socially responsible.

    2 years ago

  • BittyBolts

    BittyBolts from BittyBolts says:

    Scrappyrat, a male layer chick is a rooster, roosters are boys that grow into mean old roosters that for the most part attack you when you go near their girls. That is why a farmer doesnt want male layer chicks, they dont lay eggs! They are only good for reproducing (and you only need one for that) and the oven or pot. So layer chicks come in boys and girls, the girls lay lots of eggs and the boys get taken to the noodle soup factory.

    2 years ago

  • daniellerosebean

    daniellerosebean from daniellerosebean says:

    I love how vegans make vegetables taste like meat.

    2 years ago

  • rivahside

    rivahside says:

    However and whatever you choose to eat should not be thrust upon you. It's become so political now and so many are made to feel guilty if they choose to eat meat.

    2 years ago

  • BittyBolts

    BittyBolts from BittyBolts says:

    Amen to rivahside! My doctor told me to eat beef, women need the iron that it gives you. He said to eat it with a nice green salad and oranges. The citrus helps you absorb the iron!

    2 years ago

  • franz66

    franz66 from franz66 says:

    I totally agree that this topic is incredibly out-of-place on etsy... there isn't even an attempt to tie it in with some sort of product-relating, like to the vegan sellers or groups etc. HOWEVER, neither is a blog post about a butcher or the killing of turkeys on Thanksgiving. I suspect etsy may have gotten some complaints and was trying to "balance" things out with this extremely mandy-pandy, wishy-washy piece that, in the end, is not taking a stand about anything whatsoever. why oh why would they bother to post in a content area they have no experience or authority (or position) with at all? a piece about vegan food ON ETSY would have made a ton more sense! etsy's blog posts in general the last few months, imo, have really gone down hill and lack any focus or relevance.

    2 years ago

  • dangargyle

    dangargyle from dangargyle says:

    Look at Etsy talking veganism! dang argyle is run by two vegans and I appreciate the message. Whether people or agree or not, it's something worth discussing.

    2 years ago

  • LaurenRoseJewlers

    Lauren Rose from LaurenRoseJewlers says:

    I love this article, as a vegetarian I agree but i might be biased since im a already a vegetarian =)

    2 years ago

  • AncaNY

    AncaNY from AncaNY says:

    Tomorrow, on the blog, an article by Bobby Flay on the finer points of fillet mignon. It is just a blog.

    2 years ago

  • lv2cr8

    Ample Goddess Jewelry from lv2cr8 says:

    This is a great article and it is nice to see a balance from the froi gras article.

    2 years ago

  • shimmerwing

    Laura from shimmerwing says:

    I don't think it is totally necessary to go vegan or push that upon people. Like anything, its about moderation and being smart about what you eat. I live in a more rural area, with a big vegetable garden in the backyard and cows right down the street, so I'm used to fresh fruits and veggies and eating organic. What I find more sad than anything is a lot of kids don't know either where food comes from exactly, or even aren't totally educated on fruits/veggies other than standard processed stuff.

    2 years ago

  • junglegymaesthetics

    Jess Jackson from JungleGymAesthetics says:

    With a message like "Veganism can save the world" it's already ahead by leaps and bounds of most organizations who try and effect change without such a forceful and positive optimism. Making the statement alone has the power to change minds and create faith that it can - and will! I hope so! There could be many more "isms" that will save the world. Funism can save the world Loveism can save the world Creatism can save the world!

    2 years ago

  • ananemone

    Sara Boatright from ananemone says:

    Yes to an end to factory farming. Actually a very thoughtful article; well said. I'm a moral absolutist when it comes to food, but not a vegan. I find it absolutely unacceptable to support factory farming, including eggs and dairy, an refuse to eat anything produced with foods from factory farms, ever. (This cuts out a lot of processed food and pretty much all dining out). However, I agree that domestication of animals/hunting are natural and not immoral human behaviors; lions eat zebras, after all. They just don't torture and imprison them and make their entire lives a misery, like we do with factory farming. Everything dies, even you and me; what concerns me is how it lived, and my personal implication in its quality of life.

    2 years ago

  • vixendesigner

    Melanie from VixenDesignerVintage says:

    I appreciated the article. As I have become more aware of how completely skewed our Federal Dietary Pyramid is, I have made a conscious choice to eat mainly veggies. I think humans (myself included) tend towards tasty and convenience foods but are becoming more aware of what we are putting in our bodies. Since I've increased my leafy green & veggie intake I truly feel GREAT. However, I cannot discount my canines = carnivore and do enjoy an occasional and delicious hunk of meat as my body tells me I need it :-) At the end of the day, we should be doing what makes us happy & feeling our very best.

    2 years ago

  • simplyworn

    kelly thomas from simplyworn says:

    very interesting topic... covering a lot of thoughts...examples I appreciate that the writer involved all forms of eaters...and really fundamentally, just wants to state...we can all benefit from plant form eating...and that really none of us want animals to be treated badly. good read...thank you.

    2 years ago

  • dottywalker

    Dotty Walker from SewThoughtfulBlanket says:

    I love fruits and vegetables! Please pass the salad.

    2 years ago

  • Iammie

    iammie from iammie says:

    Interesting!

    2 years ago

  • dottywalker

    Dotty Walker from SewThoughtfulBlanket says:

    I love fruits and vegetables. Please pass the salad!

    2 years ago

  • ArtifactsEtCetera

    Karen Daugherty from ArtifactsEtCetera says: Featured

    I think that if more people realized that "the grocery store" IS, in fact, "the same as the ballot box" a lot of things would change... and quickly. As a community, I am guessing that Etsyians (both buyers and sellers) tend to recognize that we all vote with every dollar we spend. When we spend money on things from big box stores that come from China, we are voting for mega-corporations and for China's booming economic success. When we buy local, we are voting for our communities. When we buy handmade, we are voting for individuals. The same goes for the economics of food. Support the companies, farms, restaurants, and individuals that produce food according to policies that you believe in and they will thrive. They'll then have the resources to expand and produce more... at lower prices. If they grow too quickly and the quality suffers, use your dollar to "vote" for someone else. It *does* matter and it *does* work... and it beats the heck out of using complicated and biased legislation to enforce change.

    2 years ago

  • mrsraz

    Kimberly Razon says:

    I've been a vegetarian for 20 of my 32 years and vegan for some of those years. However, I am back to eating moderate amounts of pastured, organic dairy and eggs because I just feel so much better when I do. The bottom line is that not everyone can be healthy on a vegan diet, and I don't appreciate being told that I should do something that makes me feel unwell. There is a lot to say about treating animals humanely and eating sustainable foods, but veganism isn't the answer for everyone. And by the way, what does this article have to do with Etsy?

    2 years ago

  • elleestpetite

    Donna Thai from PetiteCuisine says:

    So changing the system to treating farm animals more humanely will ultimately result in higher costs for the price of meats which will then in turn result in people choosing to eat more vegetables? Now that is something interesting to think about.

    2 years ago

  • PoetryDolls

    Bab from PoetryDolls says:

    "...has found that animal agriculture as it is currently practiced is one of the leading causes of global climate change." That was debunked a long time ago.

    2 years ago

  • AukinasGoddess

    Kathleen from AukinasGoddess says:

    the best step we can take is to put down the twinkies and zebra cakes and start eating things that aren't created in a lab.

    2 years ago

  • Blairgbob
  • studiorandom

    Dana Seilhan from studiorandom says:

    I wasn't going to comment on any more of these articles because it seems to have fallout elsewhere, but I have a few points I'd like to offer. One, you can't live on an all-plants diet without farming, and farming was changing the global climate long before now. (Did you know Iraq, home of the Fertile Crescent, used to be mostly cedar forest? True story. Just like the cedars of Lebanon, and so thick in places that the sunlight never reached the forest floor. Bet it was a lot cooler in Mesopotamia then too.) Two, you can't live on an all-plants diet without supplementation, and supplements must for the most part be made in laboratories and factories. Three, you can't get enough energy from vegetables, eating a lot of fructose without enough choline is problematic (leads to fatty liver and chronic disease), so you have to get energy from starches. Many of us can't handle those in large amounts. Four, those selfsame starch foods are subsidized by the U.S. government, which is the only reason they're cheaper than meat. And what's going to happen when the petroleum runs out and we need labor farming those huge fields? Shall we bring back slavery, then? Or might it be a better idea to get energy from animal fat? And five, people's physiological ability to get MOST of the nutrients they need from plants varies widely, and I have found a lot of information indicating that we convert fat-soluble vitamin precursors worst of all. For instance, I can't rely on vegetables for my vitamin A. I must get it from animals or I suffer health damage. Possibly up to half the population is in the same boat I am, and they don't know it. Also, the Rotterdam study showed that vitamin K from vegetables does not protect against heart disease, while vitamin K from animal fat does. And there are some nutrients, like B12, that you can't even approximate in the vegan diet without popping pills or getting shots. This is worse than you think it is because all that folate you get from plants provides the methyl groups you are supposed to be getting from B12--so vegans who eat lots of leafy greens but don't get enough B12 skip the pernicious anemia and go straight to nerve damage. If you dig far enough you will find that everything I have said here is true. You will notice I didn't even get into the protein controversy. No need. There is too much else wrong with this scenario already. So now it is up to all of you to decide for yourselves which is more important: eating for your philosophy, or eating for your health. I have already made that decision for myself, and am quite willing to pay the higher prices on meat if you have your way. I look at it like this: if I don't wind up paying for my plant-heavy (and especially grain-heavy) diet from years ago, I'll have fewer medical bills in the long run.

    2 years ago

  • studiorandom

    Dana Seilhan from studiorandom says:

    If there is even one human being who would suffer health damage or die on a vegan diet, then no, it is not the healthiest option. I am that one human being. And the worst part is, I wouldn't die quickly. I'd take a long time, and I would suffer the whole way. Do some research into beta carotene conversion and how many people can actually do it efficiently. In fact none of the fat-soluble vitamins are in their optimal form in plant foods--where they appear there at all. Folate in leafy greens masks some of the damage people are doing to themselves and of course there are always vitamin pills, but if you *must* take vitamin pills in order to follow your dietary rules (and you do--at the least, you must take B12), how healthy are you?

    2 years ago

  • CalamityCrowStudio

    Brittany Stamey from CalamityCrowStudio says:

    Great post! Thank you =]

    2 years ago

  • ArgentCavs

    ArgentCavs says:

    It was an interesting article, and brought up some interesting points. Never am really sure why so many vegan commenters always feel like everyone absolutely must do as they do. Enjoy your personal choice, and leave everyone else to their own. I'm always curious if my cat thinks it's murder for him to kill mice. If so, he seems a really cheerful mass murderer. But I rather imagine he just is a cat and eats what is correct and healthy for him to eat as a carnivore. Just like I do as an omnivore, and my horse does as an herbivore. ;)

    2 years ago

  • ashleymalo

    ashleymalo from VirtuosoVintage says:

    i love meat. I have the teeth of a carnivore and Herbivore, Eating both seems biologically appropriate. Saving the world has nothing to do with what we're eating... it's really who's eating. People will ruin the earth no matter what's consumed.

    2 years ago

  • artprevails

    artprevails says:

    What a very appropriate topic for ETSY! I have to say that I have made many purchases here at ETSY and am always looking for Vegan versions of things. I am a Vegan, have been for a year...before that had been a Vegetarian for a long while. Eating Vegan has brought me great health and I feel as though the kindness factor goes a long way spiritually. I understand that the world will not likely embrace Veganism but for me I see huge benefits...and my Veganism extends huge benefits to all of creaturekind.

    2 years ago

  • standpretty

    standpretty says:

    This year is my 10th year of being vegan! But I am also mindful to eat local, and unprocessed foods as well.

    2 years ago

  • shopsfor5

    Cheryl McGuire says:

    An editorial ! How fun ! If that is what I wanted to read, I would still be reading the Oregonian !

    2 years ago

  • goodbeads

    goodbeads from goodbeads says:

    Save nature,save the world,save us...

    2 years ago

  • ErikaPriceDesigns

    Erika Price from KissableLips says:

    Hmmm - seems rather fanciful to me - saving the planet might be achieved more readily if we were all more tolerant and compassionate with each other. Not convinced that what we eat has anything to do with that...

    2 years ago

  • ArtnCoffee

    Cassandra Canady from ArtnCoffee says:

    World will still be here and will live on even when were gone. The world has experienced many extinction events even without mans influence. The world is an ever changing place and we cannot control it. Even if we could control the weather and try to stop change other things can happen. A pandemic, nuclear war (were on the verge of WW3 at the moment, look up what's going on), a meteor impact, a mass coronal ejection. Nothing lasts forever, no matter how much we wish it would. The humans will be gone eventually like everything else. But then again you never know. Enjoy life while you can, no matter what you do you could always die tomorrow.. So live everyday like it's your last.

    2 years ago

  • mariacruz3
  • LittleWrenPottery

    Victoria Baker from LittleWrenPottery says:

    I hate to say this but I dont think I could ever be Vegan, I love my veg and dairy too... A world without buttercream would be a little bit of a darker place to live! I know thats a bit selfish but theres quite a bit that you'd miss out on... like cheese.

    2 years ago

  • TheHickoryTree

    Linda from TheHickoryTree says:

    Great post. Although I'm not vegan, we have cut out 75% of the meat in our diets in the past 2 years. I'm not sure I could ever be completely vegan. Completely cutting out eggs, cheese, fish and poultry would be a hard adjustment to make in my world. Sometimes when these editorials are written it's more fun to read the responses than the articles themselves.

    2 years ago

  • SquareApple

    Heather Sutton from SquareApple says:

    What on earth is boxed or tubed meat I heard mentioned? I think that I wuld turn vegan if that was the alternative. What we eat does have a massive impact on the earth, bear in mind that if everyone only ate organic food there would only be enough to feed 1/3 of the world's population. Fertilizers are sometimes a good thing when you consider that they have stopped 2/3 or the world from starving.

    2 years ago

  • Pattertwig

    Pattertwig says:

    I would just like to mention to those who wondered whether veganism was a relevant topic to Etsy that my search for vegan products is what brought me to this website. If you open the 'Plants and Edibles' tag you will find Vegan as an option. Also, there was recently an Etsy blog featuring butchering. I didn't notice anyone in the comments saying that that was an irrelevant article in spite of it's absence in the Etsy categories.

    2 years ago

  • rekhagarton

    Rekha Garton from rekhagarton says:

    I think it is a relevant Etsy post, its part of our world, we are crafters, hand-makers, so saving the environment has a huge part of that, surely? I personally never thought I'd be a vegan, but i got diagnosed with Coeliac Disease and became allergic to all milk produce, soya and tomatoes along with all wheat, gluten, barley, rye and oats. So i became a Vegan by proxy... Considering the amount of people slowly but surely getting diagnosed with life changing allergies maybe the world is slowly evolving anyway... But i don't believe you can force people to change their diets or even appeal to them.

    2 years ago

  • AnnaMarsh

    AnnaMarsh says:

    A nice well balanced article. It looks like some of the people having a rant in the comments just read the word "vegan" and then skipped the rest. Some meat eaters do seem to get the hump whenever Veganism or Vegetarianism is mentioned and feel that they have to list a whole of load of reasons why they must eat meat. Vegans FTW! :) :)

    2 years ago

  • kelbatchelor

    kelly Batchelor says:

    What a topic! I read the topic and every response. I must say the article itself was very balanced - the BEST response was Kae Schell and I must agree - knowledge is power. Vegans, vegetarians, omnivores, carnivores, whateveravores alike - keep an open mind and understand that knowledge is power! being informed is the best thing you can do regardless of what you eat or don't eat. We will never all agree on what we should or shouldn't be eating, but we can at least be compassionate towards each other for the choices we make. I say eat, drink, and be merry! (locally would be best, but sometimes it's just not in the budget.......yet)

    2 years ago

  • luinecu

    Sophie Thorne says:

    People who are vegan (like myself) tend to do it for the animals, there are very few environmental vegans who aren't in it for the animals. In any case any benefit or perceived benefit to the environment is often a by-product of something the individual might choose to do anyway. Certainly peoples views on wool vs synthetic are valid, but I think you'd have to be a bit daft to make that argument without taking onboard other plant-based options, such as bamboo. Veganism is a good Etsy issue because finding vegan/cruelty-free/etc goods in mainstream shops is difficult. However, maybe the direction of the article should have been more towards the non-food issues (not that there aren't people selling vegan grub on here too). At the end of the day, we are all just trying to do our best. No vegan is perfect, and its just one way of putting your position as a consumer to use in reflecting your views on ethics and our society. One could just as easily boycott Nestle or Coca Cola, or help third world children, or any other notable cause. Veganism is just one way of trying to be a better person; not necessarily the best.

    2 years ago

  • KarolinFelix

    KarolinFelix from KarolinFelix says:

    Personally, I would like to see more articles about recycling than about what I should eat. I don't think quitting meat completely is possible, especially after reading the book about human diet evolution since the very beginning. .......................................................................................................................................... Our Brains wouldn't grow if not meat. There was meat, veggies and fruits at the beginning....humans were able to run 3 days straight, chasing big animal so that it died from exhaustion. ......................................................................................................................................... Then people started to experiment with grass seeds, mixing different types to create large grain. That was also time when dental problems and first weight problems arrived. Then we discovered sugar, and it resulted in massive weight problems and diseases connected to obesity. ........................................................................................................................................ Then some American Senator invented a "truth" saying "fat will make you fat" - totally not scientifically proven theory that lead to more diseases. Well, you have to know that eating fat while eating meat protects your liver, and plant fat rebuilds your cells. ........................................................................................................................................ And now there is fashion for complete Veganism, when veggies were never enough in first place. ........................................................................................................................................ Why can't we just eat modestly, a little bit of everything, making sure that our food comes from sources where vegetables grow without chemicals, Animals are treated really good and can stay on the field all day long. You don't have to eat meat every single day. Once or twice a week is more than enough! Meat stays in belly for a long time, and we're eating more simply out of gluttony. ........................................................................................................................................ Quit sugar, reduce grain, buy local food and one that you can tell it's a carrot and it's not just shaped like a carrot. ........................................................................................................................................ Vegan diet is an extreme, I am not certain if it should be promoted.

    2 years ago

  • fairyrealm

    Rima from fairyrealm says:

    I think this is an intelligent and balanced article. There seems to be an almost religious reaction among some people to the suggestion of a change of diet, particularly when the V word is mentioned. I have been vegan for years and have a healthy, well balanced diet. I would not suggest that this choice is for everyone. I'm sure there are many legitimate reasons why it would not work for many. What ever your choices are go into it thoughtfully and well informed and not as an overly emotional knee jerk reaction to the mere suggestion of change.

    2 years ago

  • KaiceJoy

    Kirsti Joy from KaiceJoy says:

    I thought it was a good article without "blasting" one side or the other. thought provoking read. I personally know my family will probably not become vegans. is there meat at every meal in my home? certainly not...i believe in all things with life, there needs to be balance.

    2 years ago

  • KaiceJoy

    Kirsti Joy from KaiceJoy says:

    I thought it was a great thought provoking article without "blasting" one side or the other. I know that for my family, we personally wil probably not become vegans....I can not say "never" because I don't know what the future holds...is there meat at every meal in my home? certainly not, but I do believe that, like in all things with life, there must be balance.

    2 years ago

  • KaiceJoy

    Kirsti Joy from KaiceJoy says:

    sorry about the repeating comments!! my computer is acting up today!!!OOPS!!

    2 years ago

  • KarolinFelix

    KarolinFelix from KarolinFelix says:

    oh, I just want to add - I'm am completely not against Vegan way of life. I could switch right now If there was some data bout how it does influence your health ( data for a person that had only vegetables in their menu for the whole life). why? Because experiments are dangerous - like the one with roentgen (when it was invented)... Roentgen was believed to improve your health and many wealthy people had it int heir apartments, flashing themselves regularly.. well.... you know the results ............................................ ....................................................................................................................................... I think major problem lies in how this society treats animals, plants and earth in general. I would love to see THAT change. Then I would not feel guilty for eating meet twice a month (I've cut 90% of meat from my menu)

    2 years ago

  • Mindtheowl

    T. Rebel from RebelHooksV says:

    Great interesting post. For those interested in finding evidence of the benefits of a vegan diet check out "the china study", it is very interesting.

    2 years ago

  • PinesVintageClothing

    Pine from GoodOldVintageOnline says:

    Due to a sense of moral obligation, I was a vegetarian for five years, six months of which I spent as a vegan. I never stopped drooling when the sweet smell of a bacon cheeseburger was near. Finally I decided it was not worth torturing myself and that eating a little meat and thanking the gods for it is not a crime. Mmm...cheeseburger

    2 years ago

  • emmascorner

    emmascorner from emmascorner says:

    I'm wondering the impact on the environment--on a global scale---if all humans actually went vegan---wouldn't land use for farming increase? Wouldn't the use of machinery to farm the increased land use also increase?.....energy for storage will increase, wouldn't that increase the carbon footprint?...if on a global scale.... How will the use of pesticides and herbicides be stayed to feed a world population of vegans? How will companies like Monsanto be prevented from ruling more of the world than they already do? On a small scale, I can see it easily happening. On a global scale....I am curious if anyone has answers to the questions posed... Then too....what happens to all the breeds of animals that were previously used for food and for products?...what happens to all the ones still alive and to their progeny? Will this cause all animals to go extinct?.... What happens to all the felines who need to eat meat or they will die? And all the animals who need meat to survive---all the ones in compounds---whether they are in zoos, sanctuaries or rescues? I am neutral at this point.....I really do despise slaughter houses...so how does my Emma eat?..any suggestions?

    2 years ago

  • emmascorner

    emmascorner from emmascorner says:

    Excellent response ArgentCavs I think the most important point is to shift consciousness....life isn't about what we feed our bodies, it's about what we feed our souls. Change will happen when we make a shift to a compassionate world for all creatures---including plants.

    2 years ago

  • figurativepie

    Rachel from figurativepie says:

    I wonder how many people actually read the article before commenting. It's not a "pro-vegan anti-meat" article. It's an article about being food conscience. I'm a very happy vegan, and even I was relieved to see a balanced article in favor of veganism, vegetarianism, and meat-eating. I think this article belongs on etsy much more than the foie gras article. There are plenty of people on here who sell food, making an article like this quite relevant. Sure, there will be plenty who turn this in to a debate, but that's not what the article is saying. I feel healthier as a vegan than I did when I was an ovo-lacto vegetarian. I've learned how to cook great food and it's a diet that really works for me. I'm always happy to talk about my diet with others, but will not be preachy about it or try to shove it down your throat. I wish people on all ends of the spectrum would be more like that. Once you try to force your beliefs on someone, they will not listen to you at all. Here's to a healthy planet and eating locally and organically, whatever you may consume!

    2 years ago

  • ezliving

    ezliving from ezliving says:

    Uhhhhh!! Good luck to all!!!

    2 years ago

  • Mclovebuddy

    Mr. Sal Phan, Bichon Frise from Mclovebuddy says:

    though there are some very passionate supporters and it is all the fashion in the developed world, i genuinely don't believe veganism is sustainable and can have negative effects on people's health if not practiced properly (it takes an enormous amount of effort and energy to have a proper diet based purely on vegetables, fruit, and grain). it's dangerous to push a diet that without proper training can easily lead to malnutrition. it's fashion and it's a product of a bourgeois post industrial world feeling guilty about the mess it created.

    2 years ago

  • krize

    Kristina Sabaite from krize says:

    I think this is a pefect topic on Etsy! As Etsy is a comunity...and most of the times when my friends veggies ask me where to buy vegan handmade things I reffer them to Etsy. The fact is that the type of live we have now is not sustainable...Eating so much meat is not sustainable, the farm factory is what most contaminate (I recomend you to se "Meat the truth" movie). On the other hand - we have etchical argument. And we want it or not, we are humans and we DO have etthics and moral. A lion cannot choose, and we can do. We perfectly understand all the steps we are taking to feed our selves. I am vegan and I am very happy, I read a lot of books (medical issues, I recomned "China Study") and I am very sure that meat, fish, dairy products and eggs are not good for health...and since I am vegan I have better health and better energy. I do not think that all the people will turn vegetarian...but at least I hope they will reduce this terrible amount of animal product consumption. Can veganism save the world? It can make the worl better place to live with less hunger, less desforestation...And you know what? Veganism saves life of animals and this for me is very important!

    2 years ago

  • sweetseasons

    sweetseasons says:

    I have no issues with someone who chooses to be a vegan - but I dislike articles like this that suggest that the vegan lifestyle is a superior one to those who choose to be omnivores. It has a ring of smugness and self-satisfaction that I find supremely annoying - and not supported by facts. I am getting very, very tired of people who think that they have all the answers and have the right to preach to other people about the lifestyle choices they think the rest of us should be making.

    2 years ago

  • DonnaWalker

    Donna Walker from DonnaWalker says:

    Great article Sami! Discussion needs to happen all the time. Pros and cons to meat eating, vegetarianism, veganism, should be evaluated, argued, and researched by everyone. It is the mindless eating, the not being aware of your impact on others that is the problem. Consuming large quantities of meat daily is not sustainable or healthy. The point IS NOT that everyone should stop eating meat, the point is each person should think about his or her choices and what they mean for their children and the environment. If everyone consciously ate less meat, or raised a garden, or supported local farmers, it would have a huge impact. Simply setting aside a couple of days a week for a vegetarian diet is a good beginning.

    2 years ago

  • LauraBoyea

    Laura Boyea from LauraBoyea says:

    Great article!! I like to eat vegan for at least half of my day. and going to a Vegan comfort food cooking class tonight!

    2 years ago

  • VikingX

    VikingX from VikingX says:

    Sometimes I think people are just afraid to try. Why not try to be vegan, even just for a while? Its better to give it a go, even if you don't do it forever. Better for animals who aren't being eaten, for the environment for that time, and for yourself - a diet low in meat and dairy is healthier than one that is high, and also, a challenge is good for the soul. The anti-vegan and anti-vegetarian comments here are quite strong, which suprised me. I don't think that all people will turn veggie in the future, but I think its a great idea to encourage people to consume less meat and dairy. And when they do, to encourage them to eat healthy, local, organic, free-range meat and dairy, whenever possible. Its healthier for them, and better for the world.

    2 years ago

  • iheartveg

    iheartveg from iheartveg says:

    Happy to see an article promoting choices (don't know how anyone could get anything other from it) and reflecting on the impact we each have on not only our small part of the world, but one another. Karen is exactly right, the grocery store is a ballot box. Vegans don't get to choose where our tax dollars go- I'm paying taxes that go into subsidies that keep factory farming sustainable. That is why meat can be purchased for .69 a lb and broccoli is 2.50 a head. Broccoli was a seed, requiring minimal assistance to become a full-grown plant. The meat was once a living, breathing entity who requires a great deal more "assistance" to become a commodity. Yes, "we must build alliances among ourselves" and in doing so, expand our minds and hearts in the process. We have so much to learn from one another.

    2 years ago

  • HyacintheandHazel

    HyacintheandHazel says: Featured

    I'm all for a locavore lifestyle, it's better for people and for the environment. Some studies have shown that people who eat what is available locally are healthier. But telling people they should be vegans is wrong. Humans are omnivores, and have always been omnivores. There's no problem in *supporting* a person in their choice to be vegan but, telling people what the should and should not be doing is just arrogant. Considering the sheer amount of dairy farmers, many of whom aren't perpetrators so called "eco-crimes", depend on their family-owned and operated businesses. It's their livelihood and theirs isn't any less valid just because they're raising animals.

    2 years ago

  • DOTTO

    NICOLE Dotto from DOTTO says:

    this is excellent.

    2 years ago

  • caseysharpe

    Casey Sharpe from caseysharpe says:

    This is definitely a more balanced article than a lot of the comments indicate, and I really like that. And the article doesn't vilify meat eaters- in fact it says that having some meat eaters is more sustainable than none at all. But it does encourage us to learn more about our food, both animal and plant, and to make informed decisions. And as to those who don't believe that Etsy is the place for this sort of article: Etsy has in many ways transcended its roots as a marketplace for craft. How many of the items on Etsy are food? Quite a few! Etsy has also become a place that espouses not only craft, but the lifestyle of crafts and local handmade, and that includes your food as well.

    2 years ago

  • funkomavintage

    Tressie from funkomavintage says:

    Yes. of course.

    2 years ago

  • MidnightGypsy

    Gypsy from MidnightGypsy says:

    First of all, while I do not believe that Etsy is the place for such a topic, I must say that at least this piece DID make an attempt to offer a balanced view from both ends of the spectrum. I do find it fascinating that some say that it's being "drilled into our brains" to eat meat & that becoming vegan is part of evolving.... actually, had we not started eating meat as a species, we'd have never developed the size of brain that homo sapiens has & we'd still be residing, I'd presume, in the trees somewhere. I certainly begrudge NO ONE their dietary choices & I loathe it when someone tries to shove an agenda down my throat so I always tread lightly on topics like this because I never want to make someone feel that way either, but I cannot help but wonder why it's acceptable within nature for other animals to eat meat, but not for humans to do so? Is it because we are "civilized"? If so, then why is it acceptable to murder an unborn baby, but we'll cry over chickens in confinement situations or eating cows? I know, I know. A whole other hot-button topic that wildly divides people. I just find the way the human mind works to be an enigma sometimes. If we were not intended to be at least omnivores, why do we have canine teeth? Forward facing eyes & padded "paws" (as all mammalian predators do)? I'm not trying to make an argument for people to eat meat or trying to tell anyone that their choice to be vegan is wrong, just pondering. I grew up on a family farm in the midwest, so animals of all types have been a part of my life since my birth. My husband & I own 80 acres in Wyoming where we raise grass fattened Corriente beef, free range chickens for eggs, tons of veggies in our garden every year & we strive to buy locally as much as possible those things that we don't produce ourselves. My husband is a butcher who has worked as a consultant within the ag industry & has toured every major packing facility in the US - and he's said repeatedly that if most people saw the treatment of animals in these facilities let alone the garbage that makes its way into our food chain, many would never eat meat again. This is why WE choose to raise our own beef & we buy locally raised hogs that are slaughtered in a small local facility owned by someone my husband knows personally. They take the humane treatment of animals there very seriously. There are other options aside from the gov't controlled food industry, folks. Seek them out. Even in urban areas you can find sources for quality meats & heirloom produce, as well as ethically raised chicken, eggs, local dairy, cheeses, etc. Not only is it better for you, it's better for your community to buy locally grown meats & produce than it is to buy from the "big box stores". I think that a lot of people simply have no idea that they CAN find local farmers where they can either purchase a whole beef, half a beef, or quarter of a beef "on the hoof" to be slaughtered & packaged to their specifications at a local processing facility, often at a very competitive price. If you don't know how to find these resources, check with your state's Ag Extension office - every state has one. They can put you in touch with wonderful networks of people who care about the animals they raise & understand the importance of humane treatment of food animals. It is so worth it to take the time to seek them out. Or, if there's a local farmer's market, ask some of the vendors if they know anyone raising grass fattened beef. You will oftentimes find an amazing network of small farmers that you didn't even know were in your area. Now, all that said - we (my family & I) are primal eaters who've essentially removed all grains & sugars from our diet & we've never been healthier or felt better, I've also never been in better shape in my life than I am right now - eating full fat whole foods, with a diet consisting of primarily meat & eggs, nuts, seeds, with lots of fresh salad thrown in there too. Full-fat dairy products in moderation, & 85% dark chocolate when the sweet tooth hits on occasion. I've lost all cravings for sweets for the most part, as well as my wild cravings for breads & pastas. I'm a completely "reformed" carb-aholic that dropped 25lbs of spare tire in short order, got rid of my nagging aches & pains, my skin cleared up & it has absolutely put my energy levels through the roof. Eating primal works for us & I can't imagine eating any other way now.

    2 years ago

  • davidloera

    david loera says:

    isnt soy high in levels of hormones. something like a birth control overdose..... bad for the environment too right? a lot of trees are cut down for a product that isn't even all that healthy. Hemp is a god send tho. carbon count would drop= no global warming, more trees safe from being cut down. how tall can a tree grow? who would know...they're cut down before reaching their full potential. we are doing a bad job of protecting this planet and ourselves from an evil force. forces like money hungry demon spawn...............how can we help make the world better with hemp. it saddens me the ignorance we suffer from. it would be a shame if the earth was no longer inhabited by humans because of some little "health" crazes effects and consequences. I love the people on earth.. I do not know how to help change this horribly ignorant pattern of self destruction. I love us. All of us. I feel the pain of the people i see everyday. i feel the pain of people that ive never seen. I wish we all had a proper chance to live perfectly. my head is down. i feel pain because i have made my life better but i do not know how to help the others. Not many believe. I am sorry to burden you with this. Im not trying to change the world. I will only wait for everyone to catch on. live like the ancients. be truly strong and happier. breathe cleaner air. dont be artificial. let go of the things you hold on to because of fear and ignorance.they dont help you. let go of that weight and fall freely....

    2 years ago

  • krize

    Kristina Sabaite from krize says:

    Only one thing more to say: I think we do not need to return back analising history: if we were carnivore, omnivore or herbivore and the size of our brain (thanks to our big brain we are destroing our world...)... We need just to stop at the right moment we are now with all the problems the world, the nature and animals have and ask ourselves "What I can do?". At this point we need all to be united, to find ways to make world better place. We have intelligence, we have emotions, we have moral, we have brain and we are responsable for the lifestyle we are "buying" and aproving.

    2 years ago

  • MidnightGypsy

    Gypsy from MidnightGypsy says:

    Kristin, that's why people need to understand that they "approve" of certain things through speaking with their $$$. People need to think & choose wisely. All of us.

    2 years ago

  • ndngirl4ever

    Sarah from TheVeganHippieFreak says:

    As a vegan, I am glad to see more people becoming aware of the benefits of a plant-based diet. I come from a family (all meat eaters) where obseity, diabetes, and heart problems are rampant. When I was a teenager, I was obese (I am 5'9" and weighed 224 at my heaviest) and my cholesterol level was so high my doctor put me on a low-cholesterol diet. I continued to be obese until the age of 23 when I decided to become a vegetarian (an idea that was sparked by another Etsy seller). Since then, I have been eating a lot healthier and exercising more. I decided to become a vegan in October 2011 and it was the best decision that I ever made. I have lost over 50 pounds and I am now at a normal, healthy weight for my height (which is something that the vast majority of my meat eating family cannot say). I had my cholesterol level checked in Jan of this year and it was 117 (which is very good)! My blood pressure is well within normal limits and I got a clean bill of health during my last physical (in Jan). To address some of the misconceptions that I seen in these comments: Yes, there are some vegans that are malnourished, but I've met many omnivores who are also malnourished. No matter what diet you follow, you have to eat a varied, balanced one. A vegan who eats a varied, balanced diet shouldn't have any problem. It's true that vegans should take B-12 supplements. However, most omnivores are also deficient in some vitamins, and foods like cow's milk are often fortified with vitamins as well. A vegan who eats a well balanced diet will get more than enough protein and calcium. Soy, peanuts, beans, many types of grains and wheat , veggies like potatoes, ect provide protein. Calicum can be otained through leafy greens and soy. There are lots of yummy vegan deserts. Right now I have homemade vegan cookies, cupcakes, and soy ice cream (which even my cheeseburger-devouring father likes) in my freezer. I realize that veganism isn't for everyone, and I make it a policy not to talk about veganism with my meat eating friends and family unless they ask me about it first. However, I would encourage everyone to actually research the pros and cons of vegetarianism before you say you could never do it. You may find that many of your beliefs about it are false.

    2 years ago

  • KettleConfections

    KettleConfections from KettleConfections says:

    Encouraging a more plant based diet, buying local, consuming and using resources more intelligently, all this will have a positive effect in preserving all the things we use in our planets for future generations. What I think is great about veganism is that it raises awareness on all these important issues of our times, and in doing so, gets us to think about and improve on the way we live. Veganism sounds a bit extreme for some people, but at least it's a fresh voice from the profit driven mainstream media that encourages us to buy more and more - putting shareholder value over the conservation of natural resources.

    2 years ago

  • continentaldrift

    Kimberley H from continentaldrift says:

    This is fantastic. Thoughtful, well-researched and considerate.

    2 years ago

  • BohemianHabits

    Cassi Jo from BohemianHabits says:

    This is great. Very well written and respects many view points on the matter. Environmental factors were the main reasons for my three years of not eating any meat. I tried being a vegan but my love for cheese put that to an end. I think this is right on when saying that it is the whole meat industry that needs to be changed. As long as they are able to mass produce meat and sell it so cheaply, the population is going to continue to consume it in mass amounts.

    2 years ago

  • ViGreen

    Vi Green from ViGreen says:

    Of course humans wouldn't have gotten "this far" without the supplementation of meat in their diet. Now that we have the knowledge and resources (something which our ancestors DID NOT HAVE) to go vegan/vegetarian there's really no excuse.

    2 years ago

  • gypsumrose

    Levi Emerson from gypsumrose says:

    i wish i was diligent enough to be vegan.

    2 years ago

  • goddessofthecosmos

    Victoria Beads from GoodnessInTheCosmos says:

    Pretty good article. Just wondering about plants and poop though...I garden and my plants eat worm poop, not animal. I wouldn't call a worm an 'animal' per se. Been vegan for many years now, I contemplate what made a person decide 'hey - I wonder if i captured that bird and pulled off all it's feathers and ate it, if that would taste good'. It just seems weird is all. Who'd want to eat a bird, or any other creature for that matter.

    2 years ago

  • artbysusmitha

    Susmitha Subbaraju from artbysusmitha says:

    It's nice to see an article on the Etsy blog that is pro-vegan (even if it isn't passionately so) after all the discussions we've had about Foie Gras and other meat related issues in the recent past. If this had been a post about being Vegan for all its various reasons - ethical, health, environmental, spiritual - then I'd say that it was lacking in many ways, without covering some very important points. But the author has clearly stated that the focus here is *only* on the environmental aspects of veganism and I'd say that he has a brought up lot of good points without being the least bit preachy. As a vegan, I will agree that just because someone is vegan, it doesn't automatically mean that they are living a very environmentally friendly lifestyle. One can easily be consuming non-sustainable plant foods and highly processed junk foods which are vegan. But conscious, healthy vegans who focus on mainly sourcing local and organic, plant based foods definitely do wonders for the Earth because of this choice.

    2 years ago

  • artbysusmitha

    Susmitha Subbaraju from artbysusmitha says:

    Also, for those who have brought up the very important issue of Monsanto and GMO Soy and Corn, if you truly do care about not consuming these evil products, then please consider this... MOST of this GMO Corn and Soy is produced to feed the animals in the livestock industry and the amount of this a dairy cow consumes each day far surpasses the amount any human could possibly consume in the same time period.

    2 years ago

  • OnlyOriginalsByAJ

    AJ Marsden from OnlyOriginalsByAJ says:

    What an interesting post! I agree with a lot of your points. I think there are pros and cons. For example, a lot of people look down on the work that Monsanto does, but I know a lot of people that work there and the work that they do is important. With their help, we'll be able to feed more people healthy vegetables and fruits :) Thanks for sharing!

    2 years ago

  • ArtWhimsCrochet

    Jeananne Sizemore from ArtWhimsCrochet says:

    An interesting article and brings me back to my Social Problems class from Undergrad.

    2 years ago

  • NicoleNicoletta

    NicoleNicoletta from NicoleNicoletta says:

    fantastic article...lots of interesting points!

    2 years ago

  • ShabbyNChic

    ShabbyNChic from ShabbyNChic says:

    I love that this article was published here as I am saddened when diet (e.g. veganism) is left out of the global warming conversation. We can all eat more consciously no matter what our diet and it can benefit us in the short-term and our planet in the long-run.

    2 years ago

  • doudoudesign

    dou dou from doudoubirds says:

    We just don't need to torture the animals before we eat them If you need to eat meat just buy certified humane. This site has a list of places you can eat and buy meat without contributing to the suffering of any animals. http://certifiedhumane.org

    2 years ago

  • Guttervamp13

    Guttervamp13 says:

    I eat meat but enjoyed the article. ETSY is about thinking outside the box and sharing interesting, different and unique viewpoints and ideas. Maybe someone is inspired to make something from this article????

    2 years ago

  • GoddessOfJewelry

    GoddessOfJewelry from GoddessOfJewelry says:

    While I agree that we don't eat grass, I can easily argue (and give you the data to back up my claim) that less than 1% of meat (beef, pork, or chicken) is grass-fed. I'm a vegetarian, but I dont think the problem is MEAT, the problem is Animal Agroculture. The current system of "Farming" animals is NOTHING like the image of the family-owned farm with farmers in overalls tending to their flocks. No. These animals never see the light of day, never feel the grass below their feet, or breathe fresh air. They are fed unnatural diets (cows should eat grass, not "feed", which is primarily corn or animal by-product)., and are routinely given preventative antibiotics (80% of all antibiotic use in the US is agricultural). THAT is unnatural, and a breeding ground for terrifying new diseases and pandemics.

    2 years ago

  • BambuEarth

    Amber from BambuEarth says:

    I gave up meat for my New Year's Challenge.. I did it for several reasons... not cause I think eating meat is "murder"... (that, to me anyway, is like saying that lions murder gazelle). But, I do think farming animals inhumanely is wrong. Animals being shot up with hormones is wrong. I don't mind good ole fashioned hunting, though. I believe it is the most respectful way of providing meat to a family... the most natural way... I agree with GoddessOfJewelry, that the problem lies with the raising of the animals, not necessarily the meat itself. ♥♥♥♥

    2 years ago

  • KandM24

    Kate from HumphandTinks says:

    At present, my partner and I are living in France with the aim of existing totally 'off-grid'. We are both vegetarian but our reasons for the choice do come down to the environmental impacts of meat production. We are surrounded by hugely fertile land of which much seems to be given over to cattle-feed production; in our parts, mainly maize. In addition to the production of their feed (using land that could be used for crop production for human consumption), there is also a massive reliance on heavy-duty farm machinery which adds to the global environmental impact of animal farming. So, here we are, feeling quite small frankly, with our own well-water supply, solar and wood-burner-heated hot water, solar PV panels providing our electricity and coppicing wood from our woods to build with and heat with. We are trying to make as little impact on the planet as possible and even our creations for sale on Etsy are created using power generated and stored by PV. If everyone who eats meat were made more aware of the true cost of eating so much of it in their daily diet, they would at least be empowered to make clearer choices? Veganism and vegetarianism are not for everyone but surely, a little deeper understanding could encourage a more flexible and adaptable diet...starting with grow your own...keep one pig in a village then, if agreed, the pig could be slaughtered to produce meat locally with a true understanding of systems and costs involved??! Bring back bartering!!!! And bring back community!!!! Great article! Thanks!

    2 years ago

  • bsasik

    Beata Sasik from bsasik says:

    Keeping politics out of etsy makes etsy a nicer place. I thought etsy is all about promoting the hand made market rather than a political forum.

    2 years ago

  • metroretrovintage

    metroretrovintage from metroretrovintage says:

    Thank you Sami for an excellent article. And for those who don't think that it's a relevant topic -- it's just as relevant as the insensitive one written by another Etsy blogger that ridiculed veganism and people's concern over animal welfare. We didn't think that *that* article was relevant at all. But if it's going to be allowed, then having another viewpoint and creating balance is only fair. So many of you need to look back in the archives, and become informed first, before assuming that only 'handmade' topics are being covered here. The blogs have never been limited to just that (surprise, surprise!). Unlike that other meat-eater article, this one never ridiculed anyone for their choices. And if you're seeking to keep politics out of it, then you need to eliminate a good 50% of what's published here -- starting with that first offensive article that I've been referring to.

    2 years ago

  • intlmoustacheexch

    star watson from intlmoustacheexch says:

    I back this article 100% cheers!

    2 years ago

  • wwcsilverjewelry

    Lynda from wwcsilverjewelry says:

    I understand the impact that eating meat can make and the production in large commercial farms but I would like to ask. What happens to all these cows,chickens,pigs,deer,sheep? Who will care for them and why would we even need them around? Do they become an extinct useless animal? I have no issues with anyone not wanting to eat meat that is your choice. I feel I am at the top of the food chain for a reason and plan on staying there. If you look back into history even before fire was invented. Humans ate what was available to them. We as humans learned to harvest and raise our food to nourish our self but maybe we took it a bit to far. I do not agree with some of the practices of large commercial farms but you will see that there are a lot of regulations that have been past to make them be more green. My best friend lost her farm because of these new regulations. To expensive to make the changes. This was a family farm and I will tell you the smaller farmers can not product what these larger farms do. Why because they don't use the drug to enhance that size and weight of animals. They don't inject them so they produce more milk. Instead they play music in the barn and keep them comfortable. Hell I would want to be one of their cows. What a life they had eating, sleeping, pooping,eating and someone did all the work to keep them clean warm or cool. Although you may choose not to eat meat remember some of these farms are family owned and we would have no need for animals at all.

    2 years ago

  • metroretrovintage

    metroretrovintage from metroretrovintage says:

    What would happen to the cows, chickens, pigs, etc? What would happen Is that they would cease to be in the overpopulated state that they are in (like humans) -- since they are 'bred' for consumption. All animals at one point, were a part of the natural world. It is the human animal that has manipulated, polluted, and continued to destroy this world and it's many habitats. Small farms should indeed be supported, and the government regulations and abuses that have jeopardized them, is simply the same Big Brother that has been exploiting and driving out family owned and run businesses, and which continues to interfere with all manner of independent commerce.

    2 years ago

  • aboutimagination

    Margie from aboutimagination says:

    we recently watched a video called "Forks over Knives" which started us off on a vegan way of life. For most of our marriage I planned our meals around the meat, but no more!! Thank goodness we love fresh vegetables. I know a few adults (2) that won't eat their veggies and feel sorry for them. We now go to our local Farmers Market in the college parking lot. It is my favorite outing of the week!!! Thank you for the article!!!!!!!

    2 years ago

  • JFillustrations

    Julia F from JFillustrations says:

    Just by reading the comments, it is so obvious that there are so many myths and misconceptions about veganism. It has already been established that veganism is healthier than conventional meat eating diets (research the statement by the American Dietetic Association). It's all about variety in your diet. Obviously, if you eat french fries and processed foods all day, you will get sick just like any other diet. I was a meat eater myself just 5 years ago, but I decided that make the other choice. It's all about choices, people. It's not a difficult concept, nor is it difficult to do...we're not trying to shove anything down anyone's throat. If anything it is the other way around. After all, we are not the ones making money from the exploitation of animals, the environment, or humans or when we expose the truth, do we? How many McDonalds, milk mustache posters, and "happy meat" commercials are you exposed to every minute, for example? Think about who is truly shoving their ideals down your throat - and you are happily taking it in and paying them to do it. If you care about the planet, other living beings, those humans that are starving, and/or your health, then I hope that you will consider veganism and research it for yourself. Here are a few suggestions: the films Earthlings (Animals, Ethics), Forks Over Knives (health), Meat the Truth (Environmental). Organizations such as International Fund for Africa (human starvation) and many more. The most difficutl part of veganism (apart from all the ridiculous stereotypes, myths, etc. that we are constantly having to correct) is taking that initial step to acknowledge what is going on around you. Once you do, you won't have any regrets and it will become an easy journey. I wish I would have gone vegan sooner.

    2 years ago

  • JFillustrations

    Julia F from JFillustrations says:

    Just by reading the comments, it is so obvious that there are so many myths and misconceptions about veganism. It has already been established that veganism is healthier than conventional meat eating diets (research the statement by the American Dietetic Association). It's all about variety in your diet. Obviously, if you eat french fries and processed foods all day, you will get sick just like any other diet. I was a meat eater myself just 5 years ago, but I decided that make the other choice. It's all about choices, people. It's not a difficult concept, nor is it difficult to do...we're not trying to shove anything down anyone's throat. If anything it is the other way around. After all, we are not the ones making money from the exploitation of animals, the environment, or humans or when we expose the truth, do we? How many McDonalds, milk mustache posters, and "happy meat" commercials are you exposed to every minute, for example? Think about who is truly shoving their ideals down your throat - and you are happily taking it in and paying them to do it. If you care about the planet, other living beings, those humans that are starving, and/or your health, then I hope that you will consider veganism and research it for yourself. Here are a few suggestions: the films Earthlings (Animals, Ethics), Forks Over Knives (health), Meat the Truth (Environmental). Organizations such as International Fund for Africa (human starvation) and many more. The most difficult part of veganism (apart from all the ridiculous stereotypes, myths, etc. that we are constantly having to correct) is taking that initial step to acknowledge what is going on around you. Once you do, you won't have any regrets and your ourney willonly get easier. I wish I would have gone vegan sooner.

    2 years ago

  • curlymonkey

    curlymonkey from curlymonkey says:

    This is such a surprising topic to be discussed on Etsy. I really enjoyed reading the article... And it is also great to connect with other vegan sellers!!

    2 years ago

  • piahathaikan

    Pia Hathaikan from NailspampersPia says:

    I enjoy this ,thank you :)

    2 years ago

  • AscendedEarth

    AscendedEarth from AscendedEarth says:

    Go veggies!!

    2 years ago

  • evearuguete

    evearuguete says:

    Julia F yes yes and yes. Definitely this thread is filled with misconceptions. The article uses defensive omnivore theories like that we are saving pigs/cows/chickens by eating them. Really? do you want me to save you by torturing you? Isn't that decent of me? If one really faces the truth of CAFOs/factory farming (where 99% of the meat comes from) they would know that we don't give animals a life. They are treated as commodities. it's total domination where they are not allowed to practice any natural behaviors. We can get poop to grow plants without killing/eating animals. we could use our own poop. I agree Julia, this "carnist" culture implores vegans to stop pushing their "dietary choices" while we are bombarded with callous/condridictory/offensive/barbaric media advertising lies about protien requirements and old fashioned dairy farms. It's something like being queer in a 'heteronormative" culture. We have to put up doting affection for pets and total denial of the plight of farmed animals. This society is totally psytzo about animals. I see it as just another social justice movement. On a more unified note, I think any move away from meat eating is very appreciated by this vegan. Yay for anyone who is eating less animal (dairy/eggs included) than last year. Someday, perhaps not in my lifetime, eating meat will be like smoking.

    2 years ago

  • littlegoatsoaps

    Karly from LittleGoatSoaps says:

    I think I'm totally anti-vegan... It goes completely against the way we were created. (Keeping in mind that the grocery store is ALSO going totally against what we are supposed to eat!) We live in the country. We drink raw milk. My son (2) is best friends with 4 chickens. We have access to an abundance off fresh grown veggies (that I freeze for winter) and natural, pasture-raised meats. I, personally, do very poorly with a lot of grain in my diet. We go through about 12-18 eggs a week for this family of 3. This stupid american craze of "Don't eat any fat! Here, have a rice cake!" Is OBVIOUSLY not working. But people are listening to the commercial industry that screams loudest...

    2 years ago

  • LoveButtons

    Julia K Walton from LoveButtons says:

    I have been vegetarian for over 30 years, and eat many vegan meals each week. I do, however, keep a few chickens for their eggs and they will be lifelong pets. I grow some veggies/fruits in the garden, but still have to buy a lot from the supermarket as we don't have an organic box scheme in this area. The organic choices seem to be fewer every week - maybe due to the fact that they are expensive and the economic climate means that they are hard to afford. But if I (and lots of people like me) don't make a big effort to buy things that are produced in a method that I believe in then nothing will change.

    1 year ago