General / Off-Topic Let's Have A Debate: To Be, Or Not To Be Vegan? That Is The Question ...

Don't be silly, the population problem is not going to be solved by people giving up meat.
A big part of any human population problem is how to feed all these people as well as the impact of people on their environment.

Using land to raise/feed meat animals is far less efficient than using that land to grow food that will be directly consumed by people. The feed conversion rate for cattle, for example, is horrible...every pound of meat you get from a cow requires seven to ten pounds of feed. This also directly relates to the ecological impact and pollution involved in getting that meat.

Poultry, (farmed) fish, and insects are the animal proteins of the future. Beef and pork will still be around, but as populations continue to grow and the newly affluent demand those meats, prices will rise dramatically...at least until we can start growing synthetic meat cheaply.

Nethertherless I hold that if required the majority would make the transition within 2 weeks.
The majority of the survivors, sure.

There isn't anywhere near enough planet or wilderness left to support ~8 billion hunter-gatherers. World population before the Neolithic revolution was in the ballpark of 3-5 million people, and if everyone was forced to return to hunting and gathering, they would quickly fall to levels far closer to that than what we've got now, or even what's considered broadly sustainable now. Without significant agriculture, ~99% of people would need to die.

I like to eat fish.

Cod mainly. The lobster or tuna is too expensive for me.

:)
Tuna tends to have quite a bit of mercury in it anyway.

Did you actually read the part you put in bold?
I think he was pointing out that trying to grow wheat in most parts of Australia is foolish, even reckless, and an exception to the broadly correct idea that the more plant based the diet, the more sustainable it is.
 

Jenner

Volunteer Moderator
It's an interesting article that @Bob Lighthouse posted and the argument that some land is better used to produce animal protein than nothing at all is compelling, at least on the surface. I live in Arizona, and like Australia we have a lot of land that is not arable but is fine for cattle grazing. If we are only interested in maximizing the amount of human population we can sustain then yes - we should use that land to produce cattle. It's not so simple, though. Producing ruminants necessarily comes with a large increase in methane emission, which contributes greatly to global warming. Finishing cattle in feedlots is bad for the local environment too, given the amount of animal waste concentrated there which can pollute water supplies, etc. There is also the moral/ethical consideration that comes with murdering a sentient creature to produce food for ourselves.
 
It's an interesting article that @Bob Lighthouse posted and the argument that some land is better used to produce animal protein than nothing at all is compelling, at least on the surface. I live in Arizona, and like Australia we have a lot of land that is not arable but is fine for cattle grazing. If we are only interested in maximizing the amount of human population we can sustain then yes - we should use that land to produce cattle. It's not so simple, though. Producing ruminants necessarily comes with a large increase in methane emission, which contributes greatly to global warming. Finishing cattle in feedlots is bad for the local environment too, given the amount of animal waste concentrated there which can pollute water supplies, etc. There is also the moral/ethical consideration that comes with murdering a sentient creature to produce food for ourselves.

North American ruminant biomass was very high in times past, until:

 
What do you mean by "core level"? How is that relevant to the modern day?
New fields of science don’t emerge in a flash, and evolutionary psychology—sometimes called modern Darwinism—is no exception. But over the past several years, evolutionary psychology as a discipline has gathered both momentum and respect. A convergence of research and discoveries in genetics, neuropsychology, and paleobiology, among other sciences, evolutionary psychology holds that although human beings today inhabit a thoroughly modern world of space exploration and virtual realities, they do so with the ingrained mentality of Stone Age hunter-gatherers. Homo sapiens emerged on the Savannah Plain some 200,000 years ago, yet according to evolutionary psychology, people today still seek those traits that made survival possible then: an instinct to fight furiously when threatened, for instance, and a drive to trade information and share secrets. Human beings are, in other words, hardwired. You can take the person out of the Stone Age, evolutionary psychologists contend, but you can’t take the Stone Age out of the person.
How Hardwired Is Human Behavior?

The majority of the survivors, sure.

There isn't anywhere near enough planet or wilderness left to support ~8 billion hunter-gatherers. World population before the Neolithic revolution was in the ballpark of 3-5 million people, and if everyone was forced to return to hunting and gathering, they would quickly fall to levels far closer to that than what we've got now, or even what's considered broadly sustainable now. Without significant agriculture, ~99% of people would need to die.
Survival occurs on an individual level, not just at a (thankfully hypothetical) global level, everytime someone runs out of fuel in the middle of nowhere.
 
A big part of any human population problem is how to feed all these people as well as the impact of people on their environment.
Naturally, but the semantics are important imo.
That's because the change in population is going to outpace any meager gains made by eating less impactful foods.

Using land to raise/feed meat animals is far less efficient than using that land to grow food that will be directly consumed by people.

Not neccesarily.
Pasture land just "is" and requires very little in the way of intervention.
Not so for growing crops, that land has to be resown every year, which takes a lot of energy.
We don't do that by hand.
We also use lots of petrochemicals to do so.
It's nit quite so clear cut.


The feed conversion rate for cattle, for example, is horrible...every pound of meat you get from a cow requires seven to ten pounds of feed. This also directly relates to the ecological impact and pollution involved in getting that meat.
Cattle don't subsist entirely off of feed, and even feedlot cattle generally spend half their life in pasture.





Poultry, (farmed) fish, and insects are the animal proteins of the future. Beef and pork will still be around, but as populations continue to grow and the newly affluent demand those meats, prices will rise dramatically...at least until we can start growing synthetic meat cheaply.
I simply don't see it happening.
Farmed fish?
Lol, I highly doubt that.
They have all the same problems, but it's compounded by them living in water, and we don't.
That translates to costs.

Furthermore, as the Aus article suggests, pasture lands fine for beef production are often unsuitable for crops in the first place.
 
Use to be once upon a time that some individuals rather than hunting for meat raised their own. As time passed some individuals got lazy and hired hunter's to hunt for them and or bought meat from those who raised them. Jump ahead a few thousand years and there's considerably more lazy individuals whom now rely on hunter's and or raised meat to eat. Personally I find that buying meat from someone who raised it easier and cheaper than buying it from those that hunt it.

Today, those the raise meat to be sold for a profit are large corporations who have multitudes of investors. Some of which are listed on the various stock exchanges. Most can be found included in most 401k's and other such small investment portfolios.

In addition though eating meat can evolve health issues, so can a 100% vegan diet. Basically the debate can boil down to do what YOU think is right and allow me to do the same.
 
Ok, I get what you are saying, however, hunting/gathering doesn't seem to be one of those hardwired things anymore, otherwise I don't know why virtually nobody does that nowadays.
Are you unable to tell the difference between ripe and unripe fruit?
Are you unable to spot movement out of the corner of your eye?
Are you unable to to spot a group of birds take off or a crow circling?
 
They are components which we have inherited which are critical to hunting and gathering.
Brightly coloured fruit stands out, your eyes are instantly attracted to movement, your mind is constantly searching for patterns in the world around you.
 
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I like to eat fish.

Cod mainly. The lobster or tuna is too expensive for me.

:)
Fish stocks have been ravaged too by over-fishing... While healthier than meat, it's still not helping over all.
I suppose in the end, what we need is a population cull. One change that our modern civilisation has brought is there are fewer wars of any scale, so people don't die off, and in addition we live longer.
 
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