Did that headline get you? This is the bottom line of a report that you'll see headlined in every media outlet in the world over the next few months. It's called EAT-Lancet, a commission of 37 scientists who have huddled for 2 years figuring out how we're going to feed 10 billion people by 2050.
Front and center on today's BBC News titled "A bit of meat, a lot of veg.--the flexitarian diet to feed 10bn." the report uses pseudo-science to fight a non-problem. Is factory farming a bad thing? Yes. Is chemical agriculture a bad thing? Yes. But the answer is NOT their alleged "planetary health diet."
The study recommends getting most of our protein not from meat and dairy, but from nuts and legumes like beans and lentils. Hence, the blog title about flatulence. I can't imagine attending conferences, church, family gatherings where everyone has exchanged meat-based casseroles and other dishes for beans. Really? I guess it might solve the energy problem if we could attach a vacuum hose to everyone's rear end. Perhaps we could put the other end in our car engine.
So what does this salvation diet look like? Red meat: 1 burger a week or 1 steak a month. Eggs: 1 per week. One big bite of chicken a day. And Africa needs to cut down on potatoes and cassava, those nasty starches. Oh, and it requires cutting food waste by half and increasing production on farms.
You know someplace these huddling scientists did not visit? Polyface. Would they be surprised to know the fact that 500 years ago America produced more nutrition than it does today? We had 200 million bison, 2 million wolves (eating 20 pounds of meat a day), 200 million beavers (eating more plants than the entire human population of the country today) and bird populations that blocked out the sun for 3 days.
As far as greenhouse gases are concerned, the methanotrophic bacteria inhabiting our perennial pastures suck down more burps and farts than 1,000 cows per acre can produce, and I don't know anyone who has 1,000 cows per acre. But these scientists didn't study complete cycles. It's like an accountant only looking at expenses and not looking at income. This is the same thing Allan Savory, inventor and guru of holistic management, encountered when talking with the producers of the ridiculous documentary "COWSPIRACY."
A lot of us out here in regenerative agriculture land are getting tired of this war on animals. People like me have been battling bad farming and hoping the environmental and nutritional community would join us, but instead, with broad brush and no recognition of positive good farming practices, these hoped-for allies have thrown us under the bus. And they've embraced Monsanto and Tyson for increased production. Go figure.
How many times do I have to say it? On our farm, we get 5 times the forage production of neighboring farms, without planting seeds and without buying chemical fertilizers. That has nothing to do with organic, inorganic, animals or plants. It has to do with management and bio-mimicry. With this new assault on heritage nutrition and ecological rules, I've decided that the more credentialed the human, the more propensity toward a fetish of asinine beliefs.
How about our customers who begin eating 6 eggs a day and eliminate their bad cholesterol markers in a week? How about the folks whose cartilage gives out and they rebuild it with bone broth and meat? Our short intestines simply aren't designed to metabolize that much straight plant material. We need those long herbivore GI tracts to do it for us and make it easily digestible.
I'm getting long, so I'll quit. Remember, the ONLY reason we have studies on this is because most of agriculture is horrible both in quantity and quality. That drives a fear of running out of food. Fear makes people think things that they would never think otherwise. It all comes down to scarcity. That's the favorite word of Monsanto, Tyson, Cargill, DuPont--name your industrial behemoth. Scarcity is their byline and how they control the duplicitous sheeple.
Do you agree with these scientists that we probably need a meat tax to get people to quit eating meat?