Do we need meat? Food industry, human healt and society | Every year in this planet the meat industry spends a staggering sum of money-running into countless millions of dolars trying to ensure that you keep on eating meat. Imagine yourself going out onto every street of every city, town and village in the land and giving a pound away to each man, woman and child you met, on the condition that they promised to carry on buying meat.
Do we need meat?
Well, that’s the amount of money the meat industry spends in one year just to keep the consumer wanting its products. Put like that, it may sound like bribery. Personally, I believe it is. Because what we’re talking about is intensive, high-pressure advertising. The sort you and your children can’t escape from you see it everywhere.
All the time on television, on posters, at the cinema, on the radio, in the newspapers. In the advertising business we’d call it ‘saturation coverage. The consumer can’t help being exposed to it-time and time and time again. Eventually, the message gets through – rather like brainwashing. And it does work.
Believe us, they wouldn’t spend one penny of their precious advertising budgets unless they were going to get a very, very good return indeed. They can afford to spend such large sums of money because the size of the meat industry is absolutely staggering. When you add it all up, it runs into thousands of millions of dolar every year.
Why You Don’t Need Meat?
So in comparison the millions they spend on promotion is really quite small. Almost chicken feed, in fact.
The meat industry spends that money on advertising with only one objective. To ensure that their consumers and that means you keep on buying meat. Quite simply, they can’t afford to let you stop buying it, or even to allow you to cut back on the quantity you buy. And they will do virtually anything they can to prevent you from changing your buying habits.
But even the meat industry can’t fool all of the people all of the time incredibly things are starting to change. More and more quite ordinary people are beginning to wonder whether they’re being taken for a ride. For one thing, many people are starting to feel genuinely worried about the quality of food they’re buying. The major supermarkets know this and they haven’t been slow to catch on.
Do we need meat? Meat Selection
They’re starting to exert pressure on their suppliers to produce better food and healthier food: food which is really fit for human consumption. It’s about time. And something else is happening, too. A revolution is taking place in the high street. Butchers’ shops are starting to close down and disappear: some of them are changing into delicatessens, some of them are even starting to sell fresh fruit and vegetables.
If you can’t beat them, said one butcher recently as he put a selection of meat-free meals on sale in his shop, you’ve got to join them! And even their own trade journal has recently labelled the butcher an endangered species, while calling for swift action to stop him disappearing completely. The meat trade is getting frightened, too. Recently, an order went out from the very top to ban any public debates with its critics. We would be wasting.
Buying their products
But don’t expect to hear, read or see much about it budgets available to put the case against eating meat. There’s no profit in it. In fact, I predict that over the next few years the meat in the media. Because there are no multi million dolar advertising trade will be spending even more money on advertising and promotion in a tougher and tougher battle to persuade you to go on buying their products.
It looks very much as if the consumer is in for a very hard sell indeed. In the business, we used to call it defensive marketing and it’s the very hardest thing to undertake. When people go off your product in a big way, it’s almost impossible to persuade them to change their minds.
So what exactly is happening out there in the marketplace? We can give you some independent figures, produced by a well-known market research firm, that may shed some light on the picture. According to this research, there are in this country at the present time well over three million people who have completely cut out meat from their diets.
Do we need meat? Iceberg
The remarkable thing is that this figure has grown by a staggering thirty per cent in just twelve months. That in itself is enough to indicate that something pretty profound is happening. But there’s more. Seventeen million people in this country have reduced their consumption of meat to some extent in the past year. That’s one person in every three. Perhaps you can now see why the meat industry is very, very worried. Because the total drop in meat consumption may only be small at the moment, but what if it’s the tip of the iceberg …?
So why are more and more people cutting down on the meat they eat? I think I can explain by telling you a story about a family we know. We want to call it Joe’s Story, because he’s twelve years old and the youngest son, and deserves all the credit.
One day. Joe came home from school. He had a problem, an his mother, Susan, could see it written all over his young face “Are you going to tell me what’s worrying you?’ she asked him Joe frowned, and didn’t answer directly. Instead he asked his mother a question.
Mum, what’s for tea?
Beans on toast. Is that all right for you?
Yes, said Joe. That’s all right. But I don’t think I want to eat more meat. I don’t think I like it any more!
His mother listened. Joe didn’t fuss over his food, he usually a what he was given, unless he was ill. And he didn’t look ill.
What’s bothering you about it. Joe?’ she asked.
Do we need meat? Dead Animal!
Meat is dead animals, isn’t it?’ said Joe. We talked about it in school today. A butcher came and talked to all of us, and I told him I didn’t like killing animals!
Susan knew what Joe meant, because it had troubled her too when she had been a child. But she’d done nothing about it, because her parents would have been alarmed if their daughter had suddenly stopped eating meat. She didn’t talk any more about it then, but discussed it with her husband that evening.
They agreed to let Joe eat what he wanted for a couple of days, but if it lasted any longer. Then Susan would have to talk it over with their doctor. And so, a few days later, she found herself in the doctor’s surgery.
‘Don’t worry about it, he advised her. ‘I’d prefer Joe to stop eating hamburgers rather than to stop eating fresh vegetables. He’s growing, but he can get all the nourishment he needs from a meat free diet:
‘But what about his protein? Susan asked. He needs lots of protein, where else can he get it from?’
The doctor smiled. You know, most of the diseases we suffe from in the West are diseases of affluence – too many calories too much fat, not enough exercise. We do have a nutritional problem but it’s a problem of excess nutrition rather than malnutrition. Fca boy Joe’s age, the minimum recommended protein intake is about
50 grams a day. That’s just under two ounces. It’s not difficult tO get that. A couple of ounces of Cheddar cheese, three or four slice of bread, and maybe a cereal dish like macaroni, for instance a glass of milk (skimmed preferably) and you’ve covered the bas requirements.
Do we need meat? Doctor and Meat!
Do you think you can manage that?’
Oh yes, that’s no problem. But I still feel totally ignorant about his other nutritional needs, like vitamins, and so on. What can do about that?
Well, said the doctor, there’s no easy answer to that. In fact, ve few people actually know what their body’s requirements are believe they’re starting to include it with health education in so schools. But that won’t help you. But it’s often only when people change their diets, like your Joe is doing that they actually be to be aware of what they’re eating. Far too many people still go through life without giving a moment’s thought to their diet.
So you could see this as a sort of opportunity. All I can say is, eat as varied a diet as possible include lots of fresh food, especially green leafy vegetables, read some books and pick up some of the free. All right?
Still worried Mom!
Susan still felt rather worried but there was not much else she could ask. As she was leaving, her doctor made a final remark:
‘You know, both you and your husband could do a lot worse than follow Joe’s example. It can be a very healthy way of living. All this happened a year ago. Today, Joe is doing very nicely without meat, and Susan is feeling much happier about it. It became increasingly difficult to provide two sets of meals in the house one with meat, and one without, so the rest of the household found that they too, were eating more and more meals without meat.
Eventually, Susan gave it up completely and her husband hardly eats it either. Although hell sometimes choose fish if they’re eating out. Their lives have changed, in a good way, and they all say they feel healthier and more alive than they did. And it’s all due to Joe.
Do we need meat? Meat Industry!
This is a pattern that is being repeated all the time, all over the country. But it’s not just young people who are turning away from meat. Old people in their seventh or even eighth decades are changing a lifetime’s habit
and reporting positive health benefits.
Many say their arthritis disappears. Rheumatic and aching joints are eased. People chronically ill, some with cancer, are experimenting with a fresh food diet and getting physical and spiritual renewal from it Other people – those who are concerned about our world and our environment are also acting in a personal way to try and bring about positive change After all, meat is a terribly wasteful commodity.
Meat Industry spends millions!
For every one hundred pounds of plant protein that we feed to cows (soya beans and other animal feed).
only five pounds of it is converted into meat. The rest – ninety-five pounds – is turned into slurry. What a criminal waste of basic food in a hungry world.
All over the country, more and more people are thinking the same way. They are asserting their right not to do what the giants of the meat industry want them to do And they are finding that their new lifestyle really suits them down to the ground. But even so most people still dont know the complete story. They dont know the full horror of an industry that puts profit before health and morality.
The meat industry spends millions of dola every year trying to persuade you to buy their products.