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Nature_and_Environment.34

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No more SOJA for me

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{Nature_and_Environment.34.1}: Lucia Jimenez {lupa} Wed, 26 Jan 2005 20:20:18 CST (10 lines)

I just saw a reportage on the Deutsche Welle about soja plantations in Matto Grosso
Brazil. Clearly the reportage spoke from the point of view of the corporations which
own the soja production. A German pesticide company sells its chemical cocktails to
Maggi, the biggest producer of soya.  The images showed an infinitely flat horizon
where once stood trees. Around 300 kilometres of soja fields, no trees in sight. No,
I'm wrong. A conscientious eye behind the camera managed to get a shot of a lonely
tree in the middle of the dust. Just to remind us that what now is dry and flat and
brown was once alive, tall and green. I started eating soya when I went vegetarian. i
went vegetarian because of environmental concerns. now I don´t know where I stand.
The corporations have taken over, let me live on air and water, while there is!

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{Nature_and_Environment.34.2}: {redleader} Wed, 26 Jan 2005 22:15:51 CST (35 lines)
{name removed by chiles Mon, 21 Jan 2008 11:52:51 CST}

  Lucia, there are a number of ways you could deal with this quandry.

  First of all you said that you are a vegetarian, and chose it
primarily for environmental reasons:

1) You don't necessarily need soy beans to be a vegetarian. In fact
they are vastly overrated as a the "gold standard" of vegetarian
nutrition. I don't know if you are a vegan/strict vegetarian or
whether you have some animal products other than meat, but either way
soy is not a necessity.

2) You could learn what soy (and other plant foods) producers use
more environmentally friendly methods. Soy actually is a relatively
resource demanding crop, but all plant foods vary a great deal by
producer.

3) It should be noted that it takes several pounds (figures vary) of
soy, wheat, corn, or alfalfa for every pound of meat produced. To a
lesser degree the same is true of eggs and dairy. Overall the
environmental impacts of meat and other animal products tends to have
the same impact as that of plant products multiplied. And that
doesn't include the additional water that the animals drink or the
pollution created by sewage from many factory farms.
   While there are arguements for and against vegetarian/vegan diets
on this and other matters, generally a heavily meat based diet can't
be recommended for environmental reasons. And this is true not
despite but because of the impacts coming from the production of
grain, soy, and/or animal fodder.

4) If you decide to reinclude some meat in your diet and/or you
already consume dairy and eggs, you can learn which producers use not
only organic methods, but also use environmentally friendly methods
that are not completely dependent on grain/soy to feed the livestock.

   I hope these points help you make your decision.

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{Nature_and_Environment.34.3}: Lucia Jimenez {lupa} Thu, 27 Jan 2005 07:03:40 CST (2 lines)

Thank you for your information, its true that its best to look for smaller scale
producers or organic growers. Thnaks!

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{Nature_and_Environment.34.4}: Anita Keese {anodekraft} Thu, 27 Jan 2005 07:52:22 CST (17 lines)

Wonderful response Red!  I couldn't think of a thing to add, and this
is an issue that interests me very much!

I try very hard not to purchase non-organic sources of corn, canola
and soy.  If this kind of environmental destrustion is important to
you, Lucia, make it a crusade to learn about all the little tiny
aspects in your life you can change.  I have loved this adventure,
myself!

Going vegetarian was a very good step.  Going back to eating meat, as
Red wrote about, would mean eating all the soy (and other farmed
crops) the cows ate!

I was so surprised to find out that all the endless acres of corn
fields that surround me where I live are all for cattle.   I thought
I could find a local farmer to sell me some to eat.  I was laughed
at..."why that ain't corn for people, that's cattle feed!".

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