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Re: sustainable global meat production (was 'Plant based diets / "definition of "farm" ')

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  • Steve
    Hi John (Willis), I wanted to respond to you the first time you posted, but sometimes life doesn t allow me to sit down long enough to write when I want to.
    Message 1 of 5 , May 2, 2011
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      Hi John (Willis),
       
      I wanted to respond to you the first time you posted, but sometimes life doesn't allow me to sit down long enough to write when I want to.
       
      Your premise is essentially this:
      "..world demand for meat can only be met by intensive, industrialised farming and the damage done by that is unsustainable (and unacceptable)...
      so, if we cannot live without it and producing it cannot be sustained where do we go from here(?)"
       
      We can agree that world demand for meat is high.  We also agree on the fact that "intensive, industrialised farming and the damage done by that is unsustainable (and unacceptable)..."
      Where our concept of the situation seems to differ is when you state that the only way to produce this meat is to employ the unsustainable option.  Indeed you do not recognise any other option at all. 
       
      Two main reasons that CAFOs (concentrated animal feedlot operations) are unsustainable are 1) all of those animals are fed on grain - predominantly corn - and herbivores shouldn't eat grain; it acidulates the rumen and makes them susceptible to E. coli and other bacterial blooms. 
      2) not only are the animals concentrated in one place, but their wastes are, too, and with the bacterial load increased, this causes a massive management issue with what is basically toxic waste.  So far the most intelligent thing they can figure out to do with it is to make gigantic manure lagoons in shallow concrete pools open to the air.  A perfect example of why people in offices shouldn't make decisions about what happens in the field. 
       
      Something like 80 percent of the grain grown in the USA goes to feed cattle (which shouldn't eat grain). If we converted that acreage to perennial pasture and raised clean beef on it (cattle on pasture require a tiny fraction of the pharmaceuticals that CAFO cattle require) and if people had access to this food in their local area, we would have a meat production system which didn't use all that heavy machinery, didn't use billions of gallons of fuel, didn't create gigantic open pools of liquid manure and didn't use massive doses of pharmaceuticals each year.  If you want to hear it from the mouth of a person who is actually raising livestock sustainably on pasture and making a profit, I recommend you check out Joel Salatin in the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia, USA.
       
      At the moment, our "modern" meat production system produces sick animals.  This is a well-known fact.  If it wasn't, then why do they need antibiotics in their feed?  This is a fine-tuned setup, wherein the management attempts to realize as much weight gain (profit) on the carcass before the animal actually collapses from weakness and ill health.  If they collapse before they're taken to slaughter, they become unsaleable, but if the animal is sold before it crashes then the meat is approved.  Sad. 
       
      This is the type of system now being pushed in the UK. 
       
      Another idea we're not looking at seriously enough is that humans don't need to eat meat as often as they do in order to gain the benefit from the nutrition meat contains - in fact, if you are raising meat on pasture in a clean system, you are going to be getting a higher nutritional value by weight anyway; therefore you wouldn't need even as much as you do now). 
       
      Touble is, in this western society, we seem to view any restriction on our intake or consumption as an assault on our very personal freedom.  So when someone suggests we maybe consider eating less of something we act like they're unpatriotic.  Which is, excuse me.. F***ing ludicrous. 
       
      Setting limits to consumption is a basic tenent of permaculture. 
      If everyone eats as much as their ego wants them to eat all the time, OF COURSE we're doomed. 
       
      Let's not forget that demand may be created by both surplus and by advertising.  Often it is both together. 
      If we are creating a surplus using cheap, non-renewable energy, then we are bound to see a drop in production sooner or later, whether by choice (gradually) or by necessity (abruptly).  Wouldn't it be nice to make it a gradual descent, rather than an abrupt one?
       
      Peace and love,
       
      Steve.



      --
      "All that is gold does not glitter,
      Not all those who wander are lost;
      The old that is strong does not wither,
      Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
      From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
      A light from the shadows shall spring;
      Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
      The crownless again shall be king."
      ~  J.R.R. Tolkien

    • john willis
      Hi Steve, Of course it is possible to keep livestock sustainably but only on a small scale; the system you mention could not be extended globally and probably
      Message 2 of 5 , May 2, 2011
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        Hi Steve,

        Of course it is possible to keep livestock sustainably but only on a small scale; the system you mention could not be extended globally and probably not even across the whole USA because there are just too many people.   

        Surely all that land used for grain to feed mistakenly to animals could be used to produce high nutrition crops for humans. And the amount of water needed to raise livestock..................... 

        In an ideal world people would be growing nut trees, gathering seeds and growing veg crops which would be eaten without obsessive cleaning thus retaining the insects, bacteria and other organisms from the soil with their accompanying vitamins such as B12.

        John.  




        To: pfaf@yahoogroups.com
        From: permalove@...
        Date: Mon, 2 May 2011 11:13:32 -0300
        Subject: [pfaf] Re: sustainable global meat production (was 'Plant based diets / "definition of "farm" ')

         

        Hi John (Willis),
         
        I wanted to respond to you the first time you posted, but sometimes life doesn't allow me to sit down long enough to write when I want to.
         
        Your premise is essentially this:
        "..world demand for meat can only be met by intensive, industrialised farming and the damage done by that is unsustainable (and unacceptable)...
        so, if we cannot live without it and producing it cannot be sustained where do we go from here(?)"
         
        We can agree that world demand for meat is high.  We also agree on the fact that "intensive, industrialised farming and the damage done by that is unsustainable (and unacceptable)..."
        Where our concept of the situation seems to differ is when you state that the only way to produce this meat is to employ the unsustainable option.  Indeed you do not recognise any other option at all. 
         
        Two main reasons that CAFOs (concentrated animal feedlot operations) are unsustainable are 1) all of those animals are fed on grain - predominantly corn - and herbivores shouldn't eat grain; it acidulates the rumen and makes them susceptible to E. coli and other bacterial blooms. 
        2) not only are the animals concentrated in one place, but their wastes are, too, and with the bacterial load increased, this causes a massive management issue with what is basically toxic waste.  So far the most intelligent thing they can figure out to do with it is to make gigantic manure lagoons in shallow concrete pools open to the air.  A perfect example of why people in offices shouldn't make decisions about what happens in the field. 
         
        Something like 80 percent of the grain grown in the USA goes to feed cattle (which shouldn't eat grain). If we converted that acreage to perennial pasture and raised clean beef on it (cattle on pasture require a tiny fraction of the pharmaceuticals that CAFO cattle require) and if people had access to this food in their local area, we would have a meat production system which didn't use all that heavy machinery, didn't use billions of gallons of fuel, didn't create gigantic open pools of liquid manure and didn't use massive doses of pharmaceuticals each year.  If you want to hear it from the mouth of a person who is actually raising livestock sustainably on pasture and making a profit, I recommend you check out Joel Salatin in the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia, USA.
         
        At the moment, our "modern" meat production system produces sick animals.  This is a well-known fact.  If it wasn't, then why do they need antibiotics in their feed?  This is a fine-tuned setup, wherein the management attempts to realize as much weight gain (profit) on the carcass before the animal actually collapses from weakness and ill health.  If they collapse before they're taken to slaughter, they become unsaleable, but if the animal is sold before it crashes then the meat is approved.  Sad. 
         
        This is the type of system now being pushed in the UK. 
         
        Another idea we're not looking at seriously enough is that humans don't need to eat meat as often as they do in order to gain the benefit from the nutrition meat contains - in fact, if you are raising meat on pasture in a clean system, you are going to be getting a higher nutritional value by weight anyway; therefore you wouldn't need even as much as you do now). 
         
        Touble is, in this western society, we seem to view any restriction on our intake or consumption as an assault on our very personal freedom.  So when someone suggests we maybe consider eating less of something we act like they're unpatriotic.  Which is, excuse me.. F***ing ludicrous. 
         
        Setting limits to consumption is a basic tenent of permaculture. 
        If everyone eats as much as their ego wants them to eat all the time, OF COURSE we're doomed. 
         
        Let's not forget that demand may be created by both surplus and by advertising.  Often it is both together. 
        If we are creating a surplus using cheap, non-renewable energy, then we are bound to see a drop in production sooner or later, whether by choice (gradually) or by necessity (abruptly).  Wouldn't it be nice to make it a gradual descent, rather than an abrupt one?
         
        Peace and love,
         
        Steve.



        --
        "All that is gold does not glitter,
        Not all those who wander are lost;
        The old that is strong does not wither,
        Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
        From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
        A light from the shadows shall spring;
        Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
        The crownless again shall be king."
        ~  J.R.R. Tolkien


      • Michael Porter
        Of course it is possible to keep livestock sustainably but only on a small scale; the system you mention could not be extended globally and probably not even
        Message 3 of 5 , May 3, 2011
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          Of course it is possible to keep livestock sustainably but only on a small scale; the system you mention could not be extended globally and probably not even across the whole USA because there are just too many people.
           
          For the open minded and creative --there are always options , -- I raise [along with many other things] Apple Snails, they eat Water Hyacinth,and other weeds --they can produce over a thousand  lbs /year in a 10'x10' tank I also have Tilapia in the tank, -- all I need to add is sunlight,and some water --the Snails eat the WH, and then poop in the water making it dirty so algae can grow feeding the Fish, and the Water Hyacinth, --with the addition of some  water, it is a perpetual motion machine, --I grow veggies with the water that flows from the tank, --  systems could be made to feed any number of people, --  [open minded enough to eat snails and fish with their veggies],
              -- question-- are snails livestock?
          I use this system to feed chickens-- but it could feed humans as well, --

          --- On Mon, 5/2/11, john willis <wilf1946@...> wrote:

          From: john willis <wilf1946@...>
          Subject: RE: [pfaf] Re: sustainable global meat production (was 'Plant based diets / "definition of "farm" ')
          To: pfaf@yahoogroups.com
          Date: Monday, May 2, 2011, 12:59 PM

           
          Hi Steve,

          Of course it is possible to keep livestock sustainably but only on a small scale; the system you mention could not be extended globally and probably not even across the whole USA because there are just too many people.   

          Surely all that land used for grain to feed mistakenly to animals could be used to produce high nutrition crops for humans. And the amount of water needed to raise livestock..................... 

          In an ideal world people would be growing nut trees, gathering seeds and growing veg crops which would be eaten without obsessive cleaning thus retaining the insects, bacteria and other organisms from the soil with their accompanying vitamins such as B12.

          John.  




          To: pfaf@yahoogroups.com
          From: permalove@...
          Date: Mon, 2 May 2011 11:13:32 -0300
          Subject: [pfaf] Re: sustainable global meat production (was 'Plant based diets / "definition of "farm" ')

           

          Hi John (Willis),
           
          I wanted to respond to you the first time you posted, but sometimes life doesn't allow me to sit down long enough to write when I want to.
           
          Your premise is essentially this:
          "..world demand for meat can only be met by intensive, industrialised farming and the damage done by that is unsustainable (and unacceptable)...
          so, if we cannot live without it and producing it cannot be sustained where do we go from here(?)"
           
          We can agree that world demand for meat is high.  We also agree on the fact that "intensive, industrialised farming and the damage done by that is unsustainable (and unacceptable)..."
          Where our concept of the situation seems to differ is when you state that the only way to produce this meat is to employ the unsustainable option.  Indeed you do not recognise any other option at all. 
           
          Two main reasons that CAFOs (concentrated animal feedlot operations) are unsustainable are 1) all of those animals are fed on grain - predominantly corn - and herbivores shouldn't eat grain; it acidulates the rumen and makes them susceptible to E. coli and other bacterial blooms. 
          2) not only are the animals concentrated in one place, but their wastes are, too, and with the bacterial load increased, this causes a massive management issue with what is basically toxic waste.  So far the most intelligent thing they can figure out to do with it is to make gigantic manure lagoons in shallow concrete pools open to the air.  A perfect example of why people in offices shouldn't make decisions about what happens in the field. 
           
          Something like 80 percent of the grain grown in the USA goes to feed cattle (which shouldn't eat grain). If we converted that acreage to perennial pasture and raised clean beef on it (cattle on pasture require a tiny fraction of the pharmaceuticals that CAFO cattle require) and if people had access to this food in their local area, we would have a meat production system which didn't use all that heavy machinery, didn't use billions of gallons of fuel, didn't create gigantic open pools of liquid manure and didn't use massive doses of pharmaceuticals each year.  If you want to hear it from the mouth of a person who is actually raising livestock sustainably on pasture and making a profit, I recommend you check out Joel Salatin in the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia, USA.
           
          At the moment, our "modern" meat production system produces sick animals.  This is a well-known fact.  If it wasn't, then why do they need antibiotics in their feed?  This is a fine-tuned setup, wherein the management attempts to realize as much weight gain (profit) on the carcass before the animal actually collapses from weakness and ill health.  If they collapse before they're taken to slaughter, they become unsaleable, but if the animal is sold before it crashes then the meat is approved.  Sad. 
           
          This is the type of system now being pushed in the UK. 
           
          Another idea we're not looking at seriously enough is that humans don't need to eat meat as often as they do in order to gain the benefit from the nutrition meat contains - in fact, if you are raising meat on pasture in a clean system, you are going to be getting a higher nutritional value by weight anyway; therefore you wouldn't need even as much as you do now). 
           
          Touble is, in this western society, we seem to view any restriction on our intake or consumption as an assault on our very personal freedom.  So when someone suggests we maybe consider eating less of something we act like they're unpatriotic.  Which is, excuse me.. F***ing ludicrous. 
           
          Setting limits to consumption is a basic tenent of permaculture. 
          If everyone eats as much as their ego wants them to eat all the time, OF COURSE we're doomed. 
           
          Let's not forget that demand may be created by both surplus and by advertising.  Often it is both together. 
          If we are creating a surplus using cheap, non-renewable energy, then we are bound to see a drop in production sooner or later, whether by choice (gradually) or by necessity (abruptly).  Wouldn't it be nice to make it a gradual descent, rather than an abrupt one?
           
          Peace and love,
           
          Steve.



          --
          "All that is gold does not glitter,
          Not all those who wander are lost;
          The old that is strong does not wither,
          Deep roots are not reached by the frost.
          From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
          A light from the shadows shall spring;
          Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
          The crownless again shall be king."
          ~  J.R.R. Tolkien


        • Steph in Montana
          ... this is my first post to this list. I am very interested in the discussions and they have lead me to next world TV... Go through this sight and see what
          Message 4 of 5 , May 3, 2011
          • 0 Attachment
            >
            > Hi Steve,
            > Of course it is possible to keep livestock sustainably but only on a
            > small scale>

            this is my first post to this list. I am very interested in the
            discussions and they have lead me to next world TV... Go through this
            sight and see what small scale sustainable really is! The window gardens
            are fabulous and mine feeds my family of 6 salads every night all winter.
            The LED light upgrade makes it almost free to operate.
            Here is the blirb they send biweekly or more often with the video clip at
            the bottom.
            Best to you all and cheers, Steph in Montana

            Begin forward message"">>>>>>>

            New York is a city notoriously short on space, but rooftop
            farming is on the rise.

            While the practice is currently an environmental rather than
            a financial trend, meet "Bright Farm Systems" a company that
            specializes in providing rooftop farms to schools, non- profits
            and corporations. They are banking on that the cost savings
            will soon be a real incentive.

            This video is one of several in Nextworld TV's new category:
            Urban Initiatives. It spotlights all the inspiring solutions
            coming straight from the belly of the beast: the big cities,
            where food is now growing on rooftops as well as in backyards
            and windows, where bike lanes are expanding, co- ops are
            forming and guerilla gardeners are on the loose!

            Video (2:41)

            http://www.nextworldtv.com/page/1578.html

            This video was produced by VOA

            Bibi Farber
            Nextworldtv
          • Gail Lloyd
            This is really cool.  I did an internship in Germany for a month about 10 years ago and green roofs are all the rage over there.  They re big in Chicago,
            Message 5 of 5 , May 3, 2011
            • 0 Attachment
              This is really cool.  I did an internship in Germany for a month about 10 years ago and green roofs are all the rage over there.  They're big in Chicago, too.
              I think we all need to get back to raising our own fruits, veggies, and small-scale animals (chickens, etc) ... not only would it be healthier, but who knows when transportation,e tc, will break down and we'll have to rely on our own devices.
              Thanks for the website.
              Gail,
              Horticulturist


              From: Steph in Montana <steph@...>
              To: pfaf@yahoogroups.com
              Cc: wilf1946@...
              Sent: Tue, May 3, 2011 8:23:54 AM
              Subject: RE: [pfaf] Re: sustainable global meat production (was 'Plant based diets / 'definition of 'farm' ')

               


              >
              > Hi Steve,
              > Of course it is possible to keep livestock sustainably but only on a
              > small scale>

              this is my first post to this list. I am very interested in the
              discussions and they have lead me to next world TV... Go through this
              sight and see what small scale sustainable really is! The window gardens
              are fabulous and mine feeds my family of 6 salads every night all winter.
              The LED light upgrade makes it almost free to operate.
              Here is the blirb they send biweekly or more often with the video clip at
              the bottom.
              Best to you all and cheers, Steph in Montana

              Begin forward message"">>>>>>>

              New York is a city notoriously short on space, but rooftop
              farming is on the rise.

              While the practice is currently an environmental rather than
              a financial trend, meet "Bright Farm Systems" a company that
              specializes in providing rooftop farms to schools, non- profits
              and corporations. They are banking on that the cost savings
              will soon be a real incentive.

              This video is one of several in Nextworld TV's new category:
              Urban Initiatives. It spotlights all the inspiring solutions
              coming straight from the belly of the beast: the big cities,
              where food is now growing on rooftops as well as in backyards
              and windows, where bike lanes are expanding, co- ops are
              forming and guerilla gardeners are on the loose!

              Video (2:41)

              http://www.nextworldtv.com/page/1578.html

              This video was produced by VOA

              Bibi Farber
              Nextworldtv

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