Some nonvegans will argue that food miles matter more (in terms of the environment) than anything else. They promote eating locally, not eating vegan.
Clearly, some people can easily be both locavores and vegans, but many must choose which is more important for some food choices. Luckily, there isn’t a ton of conflict between local eating and vegan eating, since most people don’t have a local slaughterhouse.
Here are some resources regarding the locavore vs. vegan “debate”:
- The Locavore Myth – “there is one thing you can do to shrink the carbon footprint of your dinner: Take the meat off your plate. No matter how you slice it, it takes more energy to bring meat, as opposed to plants, to the table.”
- Green Your Meat = “A study by Carnegie Mellon University scientists has concluded that eating less meat will reduce carbon emissions even more than purchasing food locally.”
- It’s the Meat, not the Miles – Title says it all
- Food miles don’t feed climate change – meat does – “An analysis of the environmental toll of food production concludes that transportation is a mere drop in the carbon bucket. Foods such as beef and dairy make a far deeper impression on a consumer’s carbon footprint.”
- Food-Miles and the Relative Climate Impacts of Food Choices in the United States – “we suggest that dietary shift can be a more effective means of lowering an average household’s food-related climate footprint than ‘buying local.’ Shifting less than one day per week’s worth of calories from red meat and dairy products to chicken, fish, eggs, or a vegetable-based diet achieves more GHG reduction than buying all locally sourced food.”
- Why In-Vitro Meat Is Good For You – “Arguments against eating meat are often made on grounds of cruelty and personal health, though, ultimately, the most compelling argument may be ecological: Meat requires extreme amounts of resources to produce, and consequently carries a vast environmental footprint.”
- Even If Meat Isn’t Murder, That Doesn’t Mean It’s Good For You – “A meat-eater driving a Prius contributes more to climate change than a vegan driving a Hummer. By now, it is broadly understood that eating less meat would relieve a bit of pressure on our sullied atmosphere by lightening the methane load”
- Food That Travels Well – “buying local is not necessarily beneficial for the environment.”
- Going Veggie Can Slash Your Carbon Footprint -“what counts is the way we feed ourselves … production and consumption first and foremost of beef and milk must be cut drastically,”