Do you find familiarity in the following?

You open the fridge and your eyes are filled with pleasure seeing remnants of last night’s beef roast or maybe a pork tenderloin. As you reach for the creamer to cool your morning coffee your arm passes over a couple of thickcut steaks defrosting, ready for the night’s barbecue.

How do you feel?

Mostly without contemplation, human thought has been programmed to process words like “beef roast,” “pork tenderloin” and “steak” as separate from the noun they represent.

Beef roast is not referred to as a slow-cooked cow for the same reason pork tenderloin is not called pig meat from the area between the shoulder and the back legs

Long ago these butcher cuts were rebranded under softer tones, relying on “roast” as a verb and“tenderloin” as an adjective to evoke feelings of positivity and pleasure. Meat marketing is a form of early consumer programming.

The human body is an ecosystem, sustained by moderation and variety. A strictly plant-based diet may not be sufficient for some people. Without the proper education and knowledge on how to supplement micronutrients such as B12 or fatty acids, plant-based
diets can be difficult and quite frankly, overwhelming. Not managed properly, there is the potential of cognitive impairment or failure to thrive.


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Consumption of meat is part of our history and our evolution. Where we have strayed is in allowing our consumption to be driven by feelings of positivity and satisfaction, not by feelings of hunger.

Could a more moderate diet of meat reduce negative farming habits?

Demand for meat products has pushed suppliers to compensate through industrialized farming and killing practices. Examples of unethical treatment of animals that share our planet include: drug saturated diets; crowded living conditions; and pento-
plate practices—I'll spare you the descriptive horrors.

According to National Geographic, the over 1.4 billion cattle in the world required to meet growing beef and dairy demand contribute 40 per cent of the annual methane budget. To put that in context, the United Nations Climate Change website notes that the impact of methane on global climate change is 34 times greater than carbon dioxide.

​As the government continues work to address CO2 emissions from our automotive industry, perhaps they want to steer their focus elsewhere. With greater access to information through a variety of outlets, most notably documentary films and online journals, we have an opportunity to gain new understanding of what fuels our bodies—and where that fuel is coming from.

Concerns for the ethical treatment of animals; the impact of waste, (particularly plastics), the use of chemicals and hormones in growth
and development of our plants and animals – these are all examples of headlines we should see when we open the fridge and cupboard door.

My generation is next in line to become the decision makers of our world. With new understanding comes more questions and a restructuring of values. Tomorrow’s consumers are paying attention and ready to challenge the status quo on what fills our fridges and dinner plates.

Continue the conversation...  

Check out this TEDx Talks video, Cows, Carbon and Climate featuring organic farmer Joel Salatin  - (YouTube, TEDx Talks, Published on January 14, 2016)

Food for Thought: The Marketing of Meat

I'm not here to impose ideas of a plant-based diet and its health benefits, but I may inspire you to take a new interest in what fuels your body.

​perspective by Melissa Whigham

Like Melissa's message?  Check out this entertaining video that demonstrates willful ignorance - The Secrets of Food Marketing (YouTube, Compassion in World Farming, Published on May 12, 2014)