Wednesday, July 25, 2012

USDA “Meatless Mondays” Uproar

Ag Wired. Posted on July 25, 2012 by Cindy

An internal USDA Greening Update newsletter that promotes “Meatless Mondays” caused a bit of an uproar on Wednesday.

The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) sent out a news release linking to the newsletter and questioning USDA’s commitment to the livestock industry. The newsletter talked about various “greening” initiatives by the agency and suggested that “one simple way to reduce our environmental impact while dining at our cafeteria is to participate in the “Meatless Monday” initiative.” But it didn’t stop there:

The production of meat, especially beef (and dairy as well), has a large environmental impact. According to the U.N., animal agriculture is a major source of greenhouse gases and climate change. It also wastes resources. It takes 7,000 kg of grain to make 1,000 kg of beef. In addition, beef production requires a lot of water, fertilizer, fossil fuels, and pesticides. In addition there are many health concerns related to the excessive consumption of meat.

Within an hour after the NCBA release went out, USDA pulled the newsletter from the initial link and a statement was sent out by USDA press secretary Courtney Rowe. “Today, we have received a number of inquiries regarding a rumor that USDA is encouraging “Meatless Mondays,” she wrote, adding a statement from an unnamed USDA spokesperson that “USDA does not endorse Meatless Monday. The statement found on the USDA website was posted without proper clearance and it has been removed.”

The offending document was found on another link, and you can read the whole thing here where we uploaded it to our server. Just deleting the document from the link does not address this issue at all, since this is an internal newsletter that was sent to USDA employees. That makes this more than a “rumor.” While the Secretary may have been unaware of this gaffe and it may not be “official” USDA policy, the message has been sent to USDA employees that meat is bad for the environment. Not only does this have to be pulled, action should be taken against whoever wrote it and an immediate retraction should be made in a new “Greening Update.”

This is animal activism in a government agency that should be supporting all of agriculture and it is unacceptable.

1 comment:

  1. Tom Vilsack knows very well that he put up meatless Monday's as he hired animal rights radical Sarah L. Conant as director of USDA regulations and enforcement for the USDA. She use to work for HSUS and is entirely anti animal use. She has been working steadily to ensure that no more animals can be bred in the US by changing rules on how the USDA regulates animal breeding. This agency has been taken over by animal rights fanatics. This was no mistake and the organization is right now trying to enact a rule change that includes all farm animals. As for the impact of raising meat and eating meat our human bodies demand meat for our brains to remain rational. The human brain requires active VB12 and plants only produce inactive vb12. They are not interchangeable. However, animal rights radicals continue to push the lie because they are involved in what can only be called a quasi religious movement of not using animals for any purpose. Not content to follow their own beliefs they intend to push those beliefs on the rest of the world by spreading lies about meat and the consumption of meat. The recent study that meat kills was written by two vegans who cooked the statistics to support this radical belief. None of these studies were science and all have been debunked as fraud on the public.

    The Myth that Livestock Have a Greater Negative Environmental Impact than Cars was brought about by an error that the committee made to the UN. That error was corrected by the UN.
    The United Nations (UN) erred in making this statement several years ago and unfortunately, it has taken on a life of its own and is widely reported even though the organization acknowledged its mistake. In 2010, UN officials said that they would recalculate the number based on this error and re-release a new number.

    U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) data shows that ALL of agriculture contributes less than 7 percent of America’s greenhouse gas emissions while livestock production accounts for less than 2.7 percent of greenhouse gas emissions. By contrast, transportation accounts for 26 percent.

    Research at Washington State University, Cornell and other universities shows that beef production has evolved and, over time, has required fewer and fewer natural resources to raise the same wholesome products that help us continue to feed a growing global population.

    Consumers needn’t worry. Like all people, cattle producers have a vested interest in protecting the environment in which they live and increasingly, they are producing more beef with fewer resources.