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Oat milk is killing the planet The billion-dollar industry has duped vegan activists

Anti-milk activists stink of First Worldism. (Animal Rebellion)


November 4, 2022   6 mins

What did you pour over the breakfast cereal this morning? Oatly? Almond milk? Coconut milk? Surely not old-fashioned cow’s milk? As the splash of recent protests by Animal Rebellion (an offshoot of Extinction Rebellion) have warned: the bovine white stuff is the devil’s secretion. Targeting high-end grocers — such as Waitrose, Harrods and M&S Foods — in their “Milk Pour” campaign, these climate-change activists have tipped litres of dairy all over the hallowed floors of middle-class temples, while holding placards demanding a “plant-based future”.

But isn’t “Milk Pour” just a little hard to swallow? Doesn’t it actually stink of First Worldism? A cynic might even suggest that Skylar Sharples and her friends are the dupes of the billion-dollar alt-milk industry. Despite its we-save-the-world advertising, alt-milk is implicated in enough environmental destruction to turn you green, but only with sickness at the hypocrisy.

We all know the problems with dairy. It’s Daisy the cow’s methane burps, and the fact that livestock takes up so much of the globe’s surface. Except that the prime reason for the planetary extent of livestock is that vast tracts of the Earth consist of grass and scrub — food humans cannot eat, but which Daisy and her ilk can turn into nutritious meat and dairy, stuff that humans can chow. Far from being upscale food, as “Milk Pour” would have you believe, dairy — that is cow, sheep, goat, buffalo, donkey, horse milk — is the necessary subsistence food of millions of pastoralist peoples across the world, from Eastern Africa to Mongolia. I cannot wait for Skylar and her activist friends to spread the word to Maasai herders, to chuck away their milk while declaiming a “plant-based future”.

“Milk Pour” might also like to consider, before their next student farce on the shop floor, the UN Environment Programme’s conclusion that “pastoralism is increasingly recognised as one of the most sustainable production systems on the planet and plays a major role in safeguarding ecosystems and biodiversity in natural grasslands and rangelands”. Extolling “plant-based” as a worldwide cure is senseless. It is nothing but Western cultural imperialism, missionary veganism.

“Milk Pour” leaves a very sour political taste in the mouth at home, too. Animal Rebellion says it targets high-end grocers because it doesn’t want to bother people struggling with the cost of living. It seems not to have occurred to them that those people would probably appreciate some of the milk bottles the kids are upending. Milk prices have increased by 50% in the last year. And consider the most basic consequences of the protest. Who clears up the mess? Add contempt for shopworkers to the list of privileges Animal Rebellion need to check. And I say that as a proud former member of the shopworkers’ union, USDAW.

While the media obligingly laps up the Milk Pour stunts, the heads of the alt-milk firms must feel like fat cats who have got all the synthetic cream. The protests are a convenient diversion from the crass environmental profile of their own products, now drunk by one in three Britons, and worth £400 million a year. Take almond milk. Or maybe not, if you value biodiversity — hell, even if you even fancy a drink of water. Industrialised almond agriculture requires five litres of the blue stuff to produce a single nut. A litre of almond milk drink requires 158 litres of water, or 20 times as much as dairy.

Such has been the millennial demand — almond milk is the most popular alt-milk — that California, which produces 80% of the world’s almonds in its arid Central Valley, saw land planted with almond trees grow from 1,958 square kilometres to 6,475 square kilometres over the last 20 years. The result? Drought, desertification, and almond-growers having to grub up their trees due to lack of water.

It gets worse. Almond growers invariably douse their crop in quantities of glyphosate — known to be lethal to bees. According to Nate Donley, a senior scientist for the Center for Biological Diversity, sending bees to pollinate the California almond industry is “like sending the bees to war. Many don’t come back.” In California, bees are dying in record numbers due to habitat loss and exposure to the pesticides of the industrialised almond industry. Animal Rebellion? When vegans drink almond milk, they are complicit in Animal Extinction.

What about uber-trendy coconut milk? Well, coconut trees only grow in tropical climates. Western demand is causing the exploitation of workers in poorer nations: just ask a small farmer in the Philippines or Indonesia on $2 a day for back-breaking work. And, er, what about the food miles?

Or the destruction of rainforests? It’s not just coconut milk that’s guilty on this front. Large swathes of the Amazon have been burned to make way for soy farms, and the soy goes into alt-milk as well as the cattle feed. But don’t be fooled into thinking the solution is to start growing them closer to home, in the northern hemisphere. Of the soybeans grown in the US, 94% are genetically engineered. According to a study published in Food Chemistry, when sprayed with the ever-popular pesticide RoundUp, genetically engineered soybeans accumulate high levels of glyphosate — which is not just toxic to bees but, says the British Medical Journal, likely carcinogenic.

Still fancy, soya? A study published in the Journal of Applied Animal Nutrition suggests that cow milk is far more sustainable for the planet than “milk alternatives”, especially soya-based ones, and especially if the cows are in UK systems based on grass. According to the lead author, Professor Mike Wilkinson: if you’re a British consumer, “drinking milk from cows in the UK uses 11 times less soya than consuming drinks made directly from soya”.

But maybe oat milk, most famously purveyed by Swedish company Oatly, is the great white hope of vegan faux dairy? Oats are grown in cooler climes such as the northern US, Canada and Scotland — and are therefore not associated with deforestation in developing countries. Alas, the negative of this would-be guilt-free option is that most oats come from highly industrialised operations in which they are sprayed with none other than Roundup. A study by the Environmental Working Group, an American public health organisation, found glyphosate in 43 of 45 foods it tested containing conventionally grown oats — while the Pesticide Action Network reported in 2019 that 94% of oats tested contained residues of more than one pesticide. Oatly insist that their alt-milk products are glyphosate free.

You would hope so at the price. Oatly Whole Drink costs £2.00 per litre. As they sloshed dairy milk about the floor of Waitrose, complaining about “the cost of living crisis”, Animal Rebellion might have considered real milk rather than quaffing alt-milk? I mean, Waitrose’s top-end Duchy organic dairy milk is 99p a litre — a 50% saving right there. And surely, any halfway-credible protestors against conspicuous consumption would have targeted the cartons of Rude Health Chilled Organic Almond Drink at £2.40 litre? Oh truly, for those of us who believe that sustainable livestock farming is a boon for nature, human health and cutting CO2, vegan alt-milk is the comedy gift that just keeps giving. That Rude Health drink contains 1% almonds and is essentially rice and water. Frankly, it has close to zero nutritional value, and is essentially sugary flavoured water. For £2.40 litre.

And it ain’t doing much for the environment. Early Oatly adverts also suggested that by drinking oat milk instead of dairy you personally can save a whopping 73% of your total greenhouse emissions. No, you cannot. The claim is based on Oatly’s estimate that their milk generates 0.44kg of CO2 per litre compared to dairy milk’s 1.58kg. This figure is based on methane metrics that have been shown to be biased against animal foods, ignore the fact that dairy cows also end up in the human food chain as meat (reducing other CO2 food demands), and do not account for livestock pasture’s carbon sequestration.

Then you have the overwhelming problem in standard calculations of how much greenhouse gas food emits: the sums are based on gas per food kilos or food calories. Calculations based on food quality, rather than quantity, make for very different answers. As Jayne Buxton notes in her comprehensive survey of vegan food, The Great Plant-Based Con (2022), when the metric used is CO2 per micronutrient content, the footprint of dairy milk is less than a third of that of oat milk.

Alternative milk is not a milk equivalent. Oatly claims in its adverts that its product is “like milk, but made for humans”. Made in a machine, that is. It is weak nutritional stuff. Typically, dairy milk naturally provides protein, calcium, vitamin D, vitamin A, phosphorus, vitamin B 12, riboflavin, potassium, the list goes on; a glass of original oat milk typically has calcium, vitamin D, vitamin A, riboflavin and iron — all, apart from the last, added artificially. Oh, and in the case of Oatly, the “milk” comes with added rape seed oil, phosphates (linked to kidney disease) and sugar. After being called out by Campbell Soup, of all people, Oatly deftly decided to stop marketing its oat milks as containing “no added sugars”, because its convoluted ultra-production process — in that inhuman machine — breaks down oat starch into simple sugars, primarily  maltose. So you get 7g of sugar with a single serving of Oatly Original. Hence US blogger Nat Eliason’s famous assertion that Oatly is “The New Coke”.

People are getting rich off the faux white stuff. Although Oatly promotes itself as a folksy, right-on, climate-change-busting start-up, it is a $2 billion business, the world’s largest oat milk company. Top investors include that well-known friend of the people Goldman Sachs, and the equity group Blackstone. According to Bloomberg, the CEO of Blackstone, Stephen Schwarzman, donated $3.7 million to Super Pac America First Nation, which supported the reelection of Donald Trump. This is the Trump whose administration took more than 130 separate steps to stop fighting climate change.

Elsewhere, one of Oatly’s most recent commercial initiatives has been to partner with the German petrol station network Aral, to launch the Oatly Barista Edition in approximately 1,250 of Aral’s sites. In other words Oatly, whose Number 1 “Pillar of Action” is “to drive a shift toward more sustainable, low-emission practices”, has done a deal with sellers of… petrol.

That loud sound from the meadow just down the lane? Daisy the cow, natural maker of milk for humans for 6000 years, laughing her hooves off at the stupidity and gullability of humans. I’ve just told her a joke. It’s the one about alt-milk.


John Lewis-Stempel is a farmer and writer on nature and history. His most recent books are The Sheep’s Tale and Nightwalking.

JLewisStempel

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FutureProof Interactive inc
FutureProof Interactive inc
1 year ago

I’ve been vegan for 20 years and as a data scientist can vouch for the fact that the statistics given in this article are wildly inaccurate. What about water use to produce feed, or carbon emissions on transport of feed and animals?
This is an opinion piece with no science anywhere in this print.
Also it fails to address the point, that we are vegan for the animals, the rest is just a bonus. Vegans abstain from products like dairy because of the immense cruelty of animal slavery, constant raping of dairy cow mothers, stealing baby calves only to murder the male calves at just weeks old or sending them off for veal, then raping the mother cow immediately afterwards so she will continue producing milk.

Milk has puss and blood in it even after pasteurization. In America the FDA allows 750 million pus cells in every litre of milk. In Europe, regulators allow 400 million pus cells per litre. Not only is dairy disgusting and unhealthy, it’s also a cruel antiquated practice that is not only unnecessary, but simply barbaric.

Grow up dairy farmers and go get a real job that doesn’t rely on raping, murdering and slavery.

Last edited 1 year ago by FutureProof Interactive inc
Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago

Exactly. People talking about sending this to their “activist vegan niece” and the only thing she’ll do is laugh at them and dismantle every point.

Guess what? Vegans know that these points are all false as it’s what made some go vegan in the first place.

Claire D
Claire D
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

What I don’t understand is why vegan actvists think it is OK to cause people struggling to get by on the minimum wage, ie, most supermarket cleaners and shelf-fillers, make their work messier and more difficult than it already is. Such behaviour seems to point to an entitled, self-righteous and arrogant indifference to the well-being of others less fortunate.

Evan Oakley
Evan Oakley
1 year ago
Reply to  Claire D

You’re meant by the author (who, from the other articles of his linked throughout this silly piece of intentionally misleading BigAg propaganda, appears to only write blunderbuss attacks on vegans and veganism ) to conflate the minuscule number of people actually behaving this way with vegan activists, in general. I don’t personally know a single vegan who would pull the selfish, performative stunt like this of blithely creating a mess for low-wage workers to clean up. You’re meant to come away from this column with a generalized disgust and anger – not at a massive industry inherently built around extreme cruelty and the phony marketing of a disgusting, unhealthy, and massively resource intensive, wasteful product – but at vegans, in general. It’s clear from his writing this author is someone who goes around bringing up, apropos of nothing, how much he hates vegans. His writing comes across as something you’d see in a dairy industry trade magazine meant to add just enough wildly misleading statistics amid the scapegoating, othering vitriol to preserve the self-serving biases that dairy farmers are responsible stewards of the land and essential to providing wholesome nutrition to much of the world. While vegans are portrayed as clueless, entitled brats who are totally disconnected from the land and nature and are somehow so privileged they can run around recreationally wasting food and pulling stunts. All of the vegans I know are people who simply became too informed and appalled at the extreme cruelty of what’s inflicted on mother and baby cows (and goats, etc) their entire lives to continue supporting it or pretending it’s normal, natural, nutritious, or necessary. No one I know is determined to go after traditional subsistence farmers in remote locations who have few actual alternatives. But these are the impressions one would get from reading this column. Activists in the West are shining a light on an incredibly cruel and massive industry which has blanketed the public for decades with images of happy cows wandering bucolic hillsides, when the reality is of mothers unable to move for virtually their entire lives, who are violently inseminated again and again so their bodies will produce milk for their babies – who are immediately dragged away, mothers and babies desperately bellowing for each other, with the males horribly confined and slaughtered while still babies, and the females consigned to a lifetime of brutal confinement – crated so they cannot move – endless violent insemination, and the grief and despair of giving birth only to have their own babies immediately dragged away. Of course each mother is slaughtered herself when she’s no longer productive as a pregnancy and milking machine. Notice the author is so profoundly indifferent to this and so bereft of the most basic empathy toward another intelligent, thinking, feeling mammal, let alone the countless millions who are made to suffer this way, just so adult humans can steal their babies’ milk, that he claims the lifetime of deprivation, confinement, and torture, combined with slaughter, is an salutary efficiency and feature of the industry he praises. I’ve never seen an author flack for a vile industry to this extent and seek so giddily to slime its critics without working for them. Who knows what this author’s exact motives are. But he appears to be obsessed with trying shift reader scrutiny and scorn from a monumentally cruel, wasteful, and destructive big industry to scapegoating all vegans as contemptible and deluded creeps who have nothing better to do than make messes for rank and file workers. All the vegans I know simply want the extreme needless cruelty of adult humans who live in societies with plenty of affordable, nutritious options, to stop the brutality of horribly abusing mother and baby cows in order to steal the milk meant for those babies. We understand that it takes some time and support for farmers to transition. We understand that good people can grow up caught in ugly and cruel industries and it’s important to offer constructive alternatives. Some owners and workers are sadists or are violently disturbed people who take advantage of their ability to further torture defenseless innocents behind closed doors with impunity. But mostly this is an industry we are confronting. There is no justification in 2022 to brutally confine and forcibly impregnate millions upon millions of gentle, innocent mother cows in order to extract fluids from their bodies, or to manipulate them into producing babies, for whom their maternal love and care is exploited and betrayed, in order to kill, confine, torture those babies as products in turn. We all grow up blanketed in government-subsidized propaganda that what’s very intentionally hidden from us is actually something wholesome and natural.
Cow’s milk is disgusting. It is full of blood and pus and hormones and antibiotics and it is not a nutritious food for humans to consume. The amount of government support to prop up and promote this industry is staggering. All the vegans I know simply decided they’d had enough of the senseless cruelty and they’d had enough of the corruption and lies coming from captured government agencies who behave as if their role is to promote and protect this cruelty and the lobbyists and shills who make and spend millions pushing garbage like one sees in this column. We want a responsible transition to food production that’s much less wasteful, provides more nutritious food more sustainably, and is not inherently built on extreme cruelty and abuse of countless millions of thinking, feeling, defenseless innocents who love their families much like we do and who want to be free of pain and fear and suffering, much as we do.

Elliott Readings
Elliott Readings
1 year ago
Reply to  Evan Oakley

I agree on all points except that dairy is unhealthy. It simply isn’t, it’s about as good/bad for you as plant based products for the average human. The antibiotics and hormones people declare to be harmful are in such negligibly low concentrations, let alone the evidence for their harm is debatable at best, conflated at worst.
As a vegan myself, vegans need to stop trying to be “better” in every way to non-vegans, and just except that on some points, there is no point.
Ultimately, I’m not vegan for the sake of animals, I am vegan for the slight sustainability increase and the possibility of a longer existence for the human race.
Veganism is more sustainable if you choose your sources wisely, but if industry finds a way to make animal products efficiently sustainable while maintaining nutritional value, then I would eat animal products.

Michael Layman
Michael Layman
1 year ago

I don’t dislike vegans, but I don’t respect their “all or none” attitude to the planet.

Dr Gabriel Gosford
Dr Gabriel Gosford
1 year ago
Reply to  Michael Layman

You prefer hypocrites then?
Vegans think it is wrong to enslave or purposely harm or kill other sentient animals.
No vegan I know opposes indigenous people subsisting from animal products, in the same way they don’t object to a lion or a wolf eating an animal – they have no choice.
Veganism about not causing AVOIDABLE suffering.and death – are you in favour of causing unnecessary suffering and death?
As a scientist, I can tell you that this article contains so many false statements the author should bow his head in shame.
It makes me wonder what his motives are, perhaps he just enjoys twisting and falsifying facts to try to discredit the small number of people who try their best not to cause unnecessary suffering.
A strange and disturbing pastime for any man.

Peter Hollander
Peter Hollander
1 year ago

Plants have feelings too! As for the patronising “indigenous” people subsisting on animal products, the poor indigenous folk here need dairy, meat and fish for a balanced diet. If you are an employer, you will have noticed that vegans are off sick more than even the overweight, plus they look wan and unwell most of the time. It’s not natural – we are designed to eat meat and ignoring that choice can be seen by looking at the weedy folk in India who have subsisted on vegetables and grains for centuries, and compare them those who eat meat and dairy products – much beefier, stronger, taller Sikh peasants compared to short thin weaker Hindu peasants.
So if you want healthy children, you’ll not give them a vegan diet which will stunt their growth. and development. Depriving them of dairy, meat and fish may provide you with a glow of self righteousness, but it won’t do your children any favours.

Chris Bredge
Chris Bredge
1 year ago
Reply to  Evan Oakley

I’ve no doubt that the videos you’ve seen about the “extreme cruelty” etc are true in cases of very intensive dairy farming, primarily in the US. The reality where I live, in semi-rural England, is completely different. The cows are put into spacious fields in between milking and roam around freely. From what I observe, they are also impregnated by bulls, rather than the intrusive process you describe.
Milk is not disgusting, it is delicious and nutritious. In England at least, the food miles travelled from cow to supermarket are in the tens, rather than thousands so I’ll stick with that sustainable product rather than the overpriced, over processed white muck that you’ve chosen to consume.

Rob Watkin
Rob Watkin
1 year ago
Reply to  Chris Bredge

Yes, milk is delicious, but what about the wonder that is cheese!

Seren itea
Seren itea
1 year ago
Reply to  Evan Oakley

I read every single word. You opened my eyes, I thank you. Could you list a few alternatives I could use? I want to lead into being vegan more, I’m new to this and do not want innocent beings being tortured like this!

Wim de Vriend
Wim de Vriend
1 year ago
Reply to  Evan Oakley

This wearisome rant is the best evidence that veganism is a cult that projects human emotions and feelings onto animals — and not very bright animals at that.

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago

“the statistics given in this article are wildly inaccurate.”
Which ones? 

Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Claiming the Amazon is being cut down for soy milk, conveniently ignoring that 90% of soy grown in the Amazon is used for livestock feed, and the Amazon is being cut down for cattle farms.

Only 6% of soya grown in the Amazon is used for human consumption. So which is causing more harm?

The claim that almond milk uses 20x more water than dairy is ridiculous, seeing as almond milk uses less water than dairy and almond milk for the UK market is largely grown in the Mediterranean.

If you’re worried about using water from California, stop having dairy. The meat and dairy industry uses 47% of California’s water to produce 1.4% of the world’s global supply.

The claim of plant milks to potentially be a factor in kidney disease, meanwhile dairy is a cause of ovarian, prostate and breast cancer as well as heart disease.

The article makes claims about vegan substitutes whilst completely ignoring the FAR worse aspects that dairy farming causes.

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

“The claim of plant milks to potentially be a factor in kidney disease,”
Is this true or not? The fact that dairy has side effects has nothing to do with the claim of plant milk contributing to kidney disease.

Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

It hasn’t actually been fully confirmed yet and is just a potential.

The author is clearly trying to make the case plant milks are unhealthy and cause these illnesses, yet dairy is confirmed to cause those, so surely he should highlight the fact that dairy isn’t some perfect, wonderful thing.

Oh wait he’s a dairy farmer, wonder why he doesn’t point it out.

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

“It hasn’t actually been fully confirmed yet and is just a potential.”
So not “wildly inaccurate”, then?

Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

I notice you focus on only one point.

And claiming that almond milk requires 20x more water than dairy by itself is wildly inaccurate given that dairy uses more water than any plant milk by a large margin

And to say that plant milk is unhealthier than diary is wildly inaccurate as they provide different benefits, but plant milk has less health concerns to it than dairy.

Michael Layman
Michael Layman
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

Are you sure about the water claim? Almond trees must be irrigated with vast amounts of water. Dairy cows require no additional water from what they obtain from grazing on grasses. If those grass lands do not require irrigation, then your claim makes no sense.

al jones
al jones
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

If you look at the list of foods to avoid if you have kidney problems it includes dairy products. The article is a one sided tirade.
Pesticide traces are also mentioned. There are pesticide traces in meat and dairy too.

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

“when sprayed with the ever-popular pesticide RoundUp, genetically engineered soybeans accumulate high levels of glyphosate — which is not just toxic to bees â€œ
Innacurate?

Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Well given that soybeans are mainly grown for livestock, 80% globally I believe yes I would say it’s inaccurate to place the blame on plant milks as it’s mainly grown to feed livestock.

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

That doesn’t really address the issue of bees. I’m not trying to absolve other parties. But if the facts in a story are called “wildly inaccurate” then it has to be proven. It’s true that the bulk of soy is grown for livestock, but Soy is still part of the destruction. They’re not innocent because they only destroy a lesser amount. The fact that growing soy causes less harm that dairy doesn’t mean that it has no harmful effects. Given time, if there was a greater demand for alt-milk that gained in popularity, the damage to the environment could quite possibly escalate.

Last edited 1 year ago by Brett H
Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

They can’t seems to decide whether it’s a moral issue, a science issue or a wellbeing issue, so they throw the whole lot at you.

Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Actually it wouldn’t. Seeing as soy milk for the UK is grown in Europe mainly in greenhouses there wouldn’t be nearly as much damage to the environment.

By drinking more soy milk there would actually be less damage done as there would be less need for soy to be grown for cattle, as they require much larger quantities of soy.

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

You would need to prove this: if the amount of dairy milk in all its various forms of consumption was replaced by alt-milk it would not cause harm to the environment. Not what’s being produced now but equal to total, current dairy use.

Last edited 1 year ago by Brett H
Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

How does drinking more soy milk reduce the amount of soy grown for cattle?

Jim Dairy
Jim Dairy
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

I’ve got this one – uh if people don’t eat as much meat and drink as much traditional dairy, then there wouldn’t be as many cows being “produced” at farms, therefore there would be less soy being produced to feed the cows, since soy is mostly used as cattle feed. Hope that helps you understand a little.

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago
Reply to  Jim Dairy

No, that’s not it. We’re talking about people drinking more soy. Which means there would be less need for dairy cows. The concern was the damage to the Amazon because of soy, which, as was stated, was largely used to feed cattle. But if more people drunk soy instead of milk it would only reduce the soy grown to feed dairy cows. The cattle for beef, the largest proportion of stock, would still exist and be the largest consumer of soy. That space the soy took up to feed dairy would then be filled by the additional soy needed to feed people. Reducing the number of people eating meat is another issue altogether. Kieren Yap was talking about drinking more soy milk.

Elliott Readings
Elliott Readings
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

This ignores the basic logic of conservation of energy. It takes less soy to feed humans with soy, than it does to feed cows with soy that are then fed to humans. If we used all the space currently used by cattle soy for various produce, we wouldn’t need to expand our crop for a good while.

It’s basic logic, energy is lost as it goes up the food chain, so “cutting out the middle man” that is livestock just means we have a more sustainable and space efficient food source

Helen Lloyd
Helen Lloyd
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

From reading reams of information, this is what I have come to see it. Of course many plant crops may have some ‘waste’ in terms of inedible plant matter, though some of this can be left as ground cover or ultimately used as green ‘manure’; crop residues are also being used for many products already, i.e. packaging, coffee pods, cat litter etc. However, of the actual ‘soy beans’ that are harvested from the plants, in simplistic terms let’s imagine there are 2 ‘pots’ of soybeans.
One ‘pot’ of soybean plants is grown to provide soybeans where the whole soybeans are turned into products for human consumption – such as edamame, tofu, soy milk, tempeh etc.  This ‘pot’ of soybeans, from those soybean legume plants, account for only c7% of the soybean plants grown globally; that’s for the entire global population. This is often non-GMO & often organic (on average, it is said that plant, insect & bird life is 50% more abundant on organic farms. There are up to seven times more wild bees in organic grain fields. So if nature did have a voice – it would choose organic). For ref. EU does not currently allow GMO crops for human consumption, but they import GMO soy meal for feeding to animals; from such as leading brand Alpro, they use non GMO EU sourced whole soy beans & use natural pollinators & rain-fed almonds.
Back to soy: The second ‘pot’ of soybean legume plants & the resulting soybeans are used to crush the beans: 20% of the crushed beans is oil, 80% of the crushed beans goes for animal feed. These are also generally GMO soybeans. The part which becomes animal feed has historically accounted for circa two thirds of the value of these crushed beans, which makes the crop viable in terms of value. However, if there were zero demand for use as animal feed, & the remains weren’t commercially viable for anything, then the overall value of that crop for ‘bean crushing’ would be removed & hence growing that ‘pot’ of soybean plants would not be viable. Hence, humans consuming wholebean soy products is far more efficient. As someone else said, this is pure logic – because humans consuming plants as primary consumers, rather than passing other plants or parts of plants via animals, avoids the at least c90% loss of energy via each trophic level, due to the energy being required for the animals’ life processes.

Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

The fact you use females says it all. You don’t respect women and seek to minimise them.

Where’s the lack of substance or truth to the scientific data I’ve presented? The only thing lacking substance and truth is this article.

Ian Stewart
Ian Stewart
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

Another 2 upvotes for a downvote. Kieran your mastery of the Unherd moderation is very impressive!

Simon Roper
Simon Roper
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

With all due respect, there is no presentation of ‘scientific data’. There is assertion of numbers, but seeing as none are are linked to any reputable sources (unlike the article), not ‘scientific data’ as such. The figures may be correct, or they may be from vegan activists for all I know. Without spending many hours on the internet doing research, I’ll be none the wiser.

Ian Stewart
Ian Stewart
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

Upvoting you but without a change. The vegans have commandeered the voting system!

Charles Beal
Charles Beal
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

Are you confusing US production of milk with the UK? I’m pretty sure that the figures used for water in the production of milk includes rain, so not relevant. In California, irrigation of almond trees is basically essential. In the UK, it’s rare that pasture is irrigated. Also, dairy cows (at least until recently) lived outdoors for much of the year on pasture, and have very little in the way of additional feed made from things like soya.

Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago
Reply to  Charles Beal

Well if we’re talking about UK based then it’s even worse for dairy.

Almonds grown for the production of almond milk in the UK are grown in the Mediterranean by rainwater, so that makes the entire point irrelevant no?

Also if we’re talking about California, if you’re worried about using water from California, stop having dairy. The meat and dairy industry uses 47% of California’s water to produce 1.4% of the world’s global supply.

In comparison it uses 8% of its water to produce 80% of the world’s almond supply.

Either way dairy doesn’t come out well.

test test
test test
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

Your numbers are not connected, and it makes no sense what you write here.
The worlds global supply on milk is not on the same level as the worlds global supply on almonds. Sure, you wanna point out a “higher percentage” with your 80% vs. 1.4%, but that is completely misleading and actually not smart, too.
Just think one step further: if the global supply of dairy is 10 megatons, and the almond global supply is 10 kilotons, suddenly you have 47% of C.water producing 140 kilotons of milk, while 8% of C.water producing 8 kilotons of almond. Would result per % of water in 65.8 kilotons milk or 1 kilotons of almons. All that of course given, that your numbers are not made up. But you actually wouldn’t need to make them up, because they make no sense in the first place without the described context.
Additionally, the nutrition value per unit of water can be calculated to make the results even clearer.
Would be great if someone actually can deliver useful contextual data, such as amount of global supply on almonds and on milk, and prove the given numbers from the post above.
Thanks

Last edited 1 year ago by test test
Roddy Campbell
Roddy Campbell
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

You can’t compare water consumption across different parts of the world. Growing a water-intense crop in a dry climate might be very damaging, but in a country awash with rivers, it might have no impact at all. My local council exhort me to install a low-flush lavatory, but my water come from a spring and 50m from my house, a large river carries about enough water to grow a billion almond trees – straight into the sea.

horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  Charles Beal

In the UK you can easily buy almond milk from Mediterranean almonds. Which are almost entirely rainwater fed. Alpro for example.

You’re blaming them for confusing US and UK milk production and then doing pretty much the same thing with almonds.

Dairy cows in the UK usually spend 5-6 months of the year indoors and don’t consume much soya but they are fed a lot of additional things like Barley and…Oats (which are killing the planet apparently)

Last edited 1 year ago by horti i
JR Stoker
JR Stoker
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

Milking cows do not eat barley or oats. They eat grass.

horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  JR Stoker

They eat grass and additional feeds which contain varying amounts of cereals like Wheat, Barley and Oats.

In the UK last year 3 million tonnes of compounds and blends were produced and fed to dairy cows. 3 million specifically to dairy cows that is.

Last edited 1 year ago by horti i
Hugh Marcus
Hugh Marcus
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

What percentage of the total crop is that Horti? It’s much less than the barley grown for beer & whiskey. That’s much more profitable but we shouldn’t mention that should we??

Dr Gabriel Gosford
Dr Gabriel Gosford
1 year ago
Reply to  JR Stoker

Not true. Grass doesn’t grow in winter months (below 5C).
Dairy cows are forced to produce vast amounts of milk nearly all year round in a very unnatural way, which is why most are killed at age 4 or 5 (they should live to 16 – 20 years) because they are completely worn out with a punishing cycle of high milk production, and being forced to produce a calf every year. That’s where a lot of your burger meat cones from, cows which have led lives of misery forcibly impregnated to produce calf after calf, which are then dragged away from them within hours of birth.
In order to do this, they are fed additional feed in winter months – millions of tons of it in the UK – and trust me, the crops growers use glyphosate (Roundup) to kill weeds, and to kill bees.

Roddy Campbell
Roddy Campbell
1 year ago

Do you mean silage and hay? For the townies out there, that’s made of grass.

test test
test test
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

The mediterranean is dry as a vegan cookie in the desert, just as california is during the growing season. How did you come to the point, that they have an endless supply of rainwater, when there is no rain but instead fires every summer?

Dr Gabriel Gosford
Dr Gabriel Gosford
1 year ago
Reply to  Charles Beal

The author also conveniently omits to mention the fact that the vast majority of dairy cows in the UK are fed not only with grass (grass stops growing in winter below 5C), and silage (made from grass) is not enough alone in winter months for cows who are forced to produce vast quantities of milk unnaturally all year round, so they feed the cows with additional crops most of which are sprayed with glyphosate (Roundup).or the fields are, prior to planting. For example, a farmer might feed his dairy cows silage, mixed with maize, or soy, rolled wheat, rape seed extract (& added vitamns &minerals or in the form of licks).
It doesn’t matter if you’re spraying the fields with glyphosate to kill docks, thistles & nettles (which cows don’t like) or spraying fields prior to planting crops for dairy cows (to kill off competitive weeds) or spraying crops for dairy cows directly, it all harms the bees.

Scott McCloud
Scott McCloud
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

the amazon didn’t exist during the Pleistocene, it was vast grasslands rather than forest. The world didn’t die. The world wouldn’t die today if ever tree in Brazil was felled. not that it’s recommended.

Last edited 1 year ago by Scott McCloud
FutureProof Interactive inc
FutureProof Interactive inc
1 year ago
Reply to  Scott McCloud

That was prior to the industrial revolution and having 9 billion humans on the planet you dope. Go read a book sometime


Ibn Sina
Ibn Sina
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

The meat and dairy industry uses 47% of California’s water to produce 1.4% of the world’s global supply.
I’ve no idea whether those figures are accurate but you are comparing apples with pears.

Jack Tarr
Jack Tarr
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

Hmmm…..
California uses 47% of its own water to produce 1.4% of the World’s meat and dairy supply.
California represents about 0.27% of the Earth’s land area (423,970 sq. km. of 155,454,545 sq. km.) and about 0.56% of world population (c. 39,185,600 of c. 7 billion). It would appear that California produces, using its own resources, a disproportionately large proportion of the Earth’s supply of meat and dairy.
That use of water is perhaps not so profligate after all.

Last edited 1 year ago by Jack Tarr
Hugh Marcus
Hugh Marcus
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

Kieren, once again you display a serious level of ignorance about the actual facts (a side effect of being in the vegan dead end alley)
The meal is used for animal feed, but its a by-product of the extraction of the oil, that oil is virtually all for human use & it’s the valuable part of the soya crop.
Of the meal, China takes the most of it for feeding to pigs. Comparatively little comes to Europe.
Best not mention the tofu or fake chicken nuggets either. The soya for those is grown on the moon, isn’t it??

Wim de Vriend
Wim de Vriend
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

“The claim that almond milk uses 20x more water than dairy is ridiculous, seeing as almond milk uses less water than dairy”.
Sorry, but I smell a rat here, because you seem to conflate water used for almond milk with water for almonds. And I have no doubt that growing almonds in California’s central valley takes a lot of water, because it’s a semi-arid climate, with hot summers without rain. The same must apply to the Mediterranean almond producers; the climates are very similar.

FutureProof Interactive inc
FutureProof Interactive inc
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

I’ll create some bullet points for you and include research sources from the University of Oxford:

‱Almond milk does not require 158 liters of water to produce an 8 oz glass, it requires 130 liters. In order to produce 2920 oz of milk per year, 7,000 sqft of land are needed, which is 10X the amount of oat milk.

‱ Beef and dairy create higher emissions, create more scarcity and require nearly 45X more land and resources than any vegan milk.

Here’s is a science article.
-https://ora.ox.ac.uk/objects/uuid:b0b53649-5e93-4415-bf07-6b0b1227172f/download_file?file_format=pdf&hyrax_fileset_id=m13e577c73b56987e9c3e8eeb47ca6e74&safe_filename=Reducing_foods_environment_impacts_Science%2B360%2B6392%2B987%2B-%2BAccepted%2BManuscript.pdf&type_of_work=Journal+article

-https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-46654042?fbclid=IwAR109MxO90pY5zLCS7G_-JiyKHZG8Dwm1daACXt_Z-eKWICOWY1Q4okQ8gI

Hugh Marcus
Hugh Marcus
1 year ago

Future proof in your valiant attempt to make na equation you miss one important fact. The so called alternatives aren’t actually milk, they’re just industrially created emulsions posing as milk. By comparison they are nothing like the real thing in terms of nutritional value.
They are a classic case of marketing over substance. Anyone who thinks they’re comparable just shows themselves to be easily duped.

Caroline Minnear
Caroline Minnear
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Marcus

I think one of the major things most people miss when trying to figure out the “environmental impact” of things is the nutrient density of said product.
I’m only going on a hunch (with no scientific evidence or background)
But I’d reckon cows milk/dairy products/ beef hold a much higher nutritional density per sqM of land than a soy/almond/oat product.
I live in a dairy area in Australia (& while there are some farming practices here I object to, mostly spraying) I believe buying our local south coast milk is much less environmentally damaging than my vegan pals drinking their soy milk that’s made in Japan and shipped over here.
Generally the more processed a product is the higher it’s energy foot print will be and generally our health is worse for it (no evidence, just observation)
What I do think necessary is an improvement in our land management in cattle/dairy grazing.

test test
test test
1 year ago

Your numbers aren’t that clear as you want them to appear. Cattle might create higher emissions, but it is also used for beef, and not only milk – thats from the text and you should have realized that already. It sets the required land for cattle in relation, because the food output is much higher because its not only milk that is harvested there. Also, cattle is using a specific type of land, which is not suitable for agriculture, or is temporarily barren farmland for recovery. In both cases, there is no competition for this type of land between cattle- and farmland crops. So mentioning it takes “45x more land” is completely irrelevant and misleading as you imply it would be the same land. And again, the nutricial value of oat milk is much less than for dairy, so please acknowledge that better sooner than later before you come up again with the “amounts of oat milk”, which are actually amounts of water and sugar.

Bob Maginnis
Bob Maginnis
1 year ago
Reply to  Brett H

John said “..A litre of almond milk drink requires 158 litres of water, or 20 times as much as dairy.” Most Tillamock cheese and ice cream doesn’t come from cows grazing on the green Oregon coast, but from 50,000 cows in sheds in arid eastern Oregon, fed by pivot irrigation farmed feed.

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 year ago

What is the moral difference between a cow and a rat?

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

None whatsoever.

Aaron James
Aaron James
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

It comes down to size basically

Brian Villanueva
Brian Villanueva
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

In the immortal words of Pulp Fiction:
Vincent: Want some bacon?
Jules: No man, I don’t eat pork.
Vincent: Bacon tastes gooood. Pork chops taste gooood.
Jules: Hey, sewer rat may taste like pumpkin pie, but I’d never know ’cause I wouldn’t eat it.

David Adams
David Adams
1 year ago

“…pus cells…pus cells…disgusting…” this sort of language reminds anyone reading that many vegans effectively see themselves as acolytes of a purity cult.

“Grow up dairy farmers and go get a real job that doesn’t rely on raping, murdering and slavery.” – this is not a very convincing argument that it is dairy farmers who need to grow up.

Can we have at least give a couple of examples of wildly inaccurate statistics, or at least a rational explanation of how the statistics are irrelevant or misleading?

horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  David Adams

Having read the article can you summarise from the points raised exactly how oat milk is killing the planet? How does the article back up the title? Do you think the title is a bit misleading as the article has basically nothing about Oats being environmentally damaging? Also bear in mind that cows are routinely fed oats (at least in the UK) and that in the last year in the UK we have grown 82,000 tonnes of Oats and used them in compound animal feed (plus any oats being fed whole).

He fails to mention in the section about sugar that oat milk contains less sugar than dairy milk. Which was interesting and definitely misleading.

In the section about the prices he fails to mention that 50% of the dairy industries profits come from subsidies (taxes). For a fair comparison of prices let’s remove those and recalculate the actual costs to the consumer for each. He also picked out the most expensive products. I can get oat and soy milk for the same price as dairy even with those subsidies. Imagine if the subsidies were switched!

There’s a whole paragraph about glyphosate and oats which ends by saying that Oatly is glyphosate free….ok, an unexpected endorsement there?

You know what uses more water than almonds in California? Alfalfa. It uses 35% more. And it’s used as animal feed!

“When vegans drink almond milk they are complicit in animal extinction”…..the leading cause of extinctions and biodiversity loss is animal agriculture though.

Almond milk definitely doesn’t use more water dairy milk.

Last edited 1 year ago by horti i
Colt Baldwin
Colt Baldwin
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

Almost all cows in the U.S. are fed corn.

Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

Also given that the title is “Oat Milk is Killing the Planet”, they sure spend a lot of time talking about how “bad” soy milk and almond milk are for the environment (whilst failing to mention they’re better than cow’s milk still). There’s no actual evidence of oat milk killing the planet. Strange

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 year ago
Reply to  David Adams

Speaking of purity, how many vegans got the Covid shot?
I once ran into some kids protesting GMOs in front of a supermarket. One guy had a dog with him. He was dumbstruck when I said “Your pooch is a GMO”. Oh, and I had stopped in for milk. Whole.

Colt Baldwin
Colt Baldwin
1 year ago

Hopefully, they all got the shot and their boosters are up to date.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 year ago
Reply to  Colt Baldwin

Aw, that isn’t very nice. The kids were a little loopy, but they certainly didn’t deserve to be poisoned.

Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago

No wonder you’re all so ignorant to veganism, you’re also conspiracy theorists who can’t research.

Allison Barrows
Allison Barrows
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

“Everyone who disagrees with me is an ignorant conspiracy theorist” isn’t an argument. It’s a low energy tantrum.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  David Adams

are not those teeth in my head called ‘ canines’ so that I can eat meat?

horti i
horti i
1 year ago

Are these fists I can form not so that I can punch people in the street?

Simon Roper
Simon Roper
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

Little bit aggressive…

test test
test test
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

No.
Hands are still a very complex, very fragile bodypart made of many tiny bones and tiny muscles, designed to manipulate small or fragile objects in detail. You can use them as fists, but don’t be surprised when they break, especially if you only ate soya for the last 5 yrs.
Canines on the other hand are undoubtedly designed to eat meat.
Any questions?

Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago
Reply to  David Adams

If you bothered to read you’d find examples in the comments.

The claim of the headline is inaccurate unless it seeks to say that literally everything that exists is killing the planet, as oat milk is far less damaging than dairy.

The claim that almond milk takes 20x the water compared to dairy is false. Dairy milk takes twice as much water as almond milk.

The claim the Amazon is being destroyed for soy milk is a massive exaggeration. It is mainly being destroyed for soy for livestock to consume as well as cattle farms for beef.

These are just two simple examples.

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
1 year ago

Cows can be ‘raped’?

horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  Cathy Carron

Debatable. But “Daisy”? She can definitely be placed in a metal rack, (sometimes referred to as a “rape rack” in the industry) and fisted deep in the an*s so that her rectal wall can be prodded and manipulated to simultaneously allow a metal rod to be forced up her vagina so that her cervix can have semen scraped onto it. All so that she can have her newborn child immediately stolen.

But yes, I’m sure she’s “laughing”.

Last edited 1 year ago by horti i
Simon Roper
Simon Roper
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

Might I ask what vegans propose to do work all the no longer needed cattle? How will they feed themselves and where if all the land is to be turned over to arable? The same presumably applies to sheep, pigs, chickens, goats etc. No sarcasm, genuine questions.

Last edited 1 year ago by Simon Roper
horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  Simon Roper

We wouldn’t breed cattle into existence anymore. As we eat less cow products etc there will be less demand and Farmer’s won’t raise them for fun. So there wouldn’t be any to feed.

We wouldn’t need to turn any of the land over to arable, but some of it might be. The rest (30-40% of the habitable land on Earth) could be returned to nature. Sequestering huge amounts of carbon and helping mitigate the mass extinction event we’re facing.

gabrielle sinclair
gabrielle sinclair
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

The rewilding will presumably involve apex predators hunting and killing the prey species, and many animals dieing of starvation in hard winters.
Not pain free for animals.

Elizabeth Fairburn
Elizabeth Fairburn
1 year ago

Can we start hunting with hounds again then??

horti i
horti i
1 year ago

Correct. Wild animals will continue to exist.

Last edited 1 year ago by horti i
FutureProof Interactive inc
FutureProof Interactive inc
1 year ago
Reply to  Simon Roper

The same thing that every human has done when finding themselves out of work due to obsolete skills. There are no more telegram operators, no more Model T mechanics, no more steam engine engineers, no more slave auctioneers


Go read a book, use the internet to educate themselves, go back to school, there are a million options. Don’t blame lack of options on stupidity, if they can’t survive in 2022 without working in the slave industry, then they dont deserve to survive or have a family. Obviously they are wasting oxygen and resources if that’s the case.

Brett H
Brett H
1 year ago

“they dont deserve to survive or have a family. Obviously they are wasting oxygen and resources if that’s the case”
Just a taste of rabid intolerance. So caring about animals and so dismissive of people.

Graham Perfitt
Graham Perfitt
1 year ago

Foul

Graham Perfitt
Graham Perfitt
1 year ago
Reply to  Simon Roper

There is no such thing as a vegan eco system, and vegetarianism equals extinction

Thomas Wagner
Thomas Wagner
1 year ago
Reply to  Cathy Carron

Yeah, I wondered about that too. Next we’ll be told that careless talk in the milking shed will hurt their feelings.

Chris W
Chris W
1 year ago
Reply to  Thomas Wagner

Maybe Daisy would be angry if we called her ‘she’. I feel that another pronoun should be used.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Cathy Carron

‘Confucius’ say no.
Nor women for that matter.

Last edited 1 year ago by CHARLES STANHOPE
JP Martin
JP Martin
1 year ago
Reply to  Cathy Carron

#mootoo

Aphrodite Rises
Aphrodite Rises
1 year ago
Reply to  Cathy Carron

Emotive language is generally used to win an argument when logic and reason will not.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago

this is SO funny!! is it from a stand up comedy show?

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago

are you sure that your brain does not have pus in it?

Andrew D
Andrew D
1 year ago

It’s not possible to murder, rape or enslave a cow (personally, I’ve given up trying)

Jordan Flower
Jordan Flower
1 year ago

Your reasoning falls victim to the typical conflation that all animal products are equal.
The same way almonds can be grown in a variety of ways—from glyphosate-ridden, bee-decimating, water-hogging mono-cropping, to sustainable, organic, small batch farming—so can milk production.
The enemy here is not the product, but the method. Mass production demands inhumane production methods found on industrial feedlots—you know, the places that vegans get their hidden camera footage from showing the disgusting treatment of animals. A completely reasonable thing to stand against.
But the “cruelty free” “vegan” food you consume is not “cruelty free” by any stretch of the imagination. Countless are the soil microorganisms, insects, and small mammals that get eviscerated to monoculture the veg/grains/seeds needed to produce commercial “vegan” products.
Why, when death is one degree of separation from you, is it of little to no concern? Why does a larger animal rank higher on the value hierarchy of life? What is it? Being able to look into the eyes of a cow? Knowing a chicken has a heartbeat and nervous system similar to you? Why are field mice expendable? Why is it OK—or maybe just less bad—to murder crickets by the millions for “cruelty free” protein bars?
We act as if the answer is self evident. It’s not.
We’ve seemingly arbitrarily established *sentience* as the unit of measurement by which we calibrate our scale of morality.
But it’s not arbitrary. It’s anthropomorphism.
The closer an animal’s biological system is to a human’s, the more value we assign it. Which when filtered through the vegan’s own canon that claims all animal life is valuable, is rendered a total contradiction.
How do we know microorganisms and insects don’t have some other system of perception that we havent discovered yet?
I mean, we’ve only recently discovered that trees talk.
A cricket’s nervous system is different than ours, but why does that make it *less* cruel to kill and eat?
The very thing you seek to dismantle—i.e. the notion that there is a hierarchy to the animal kingdom—is exactly what underpins the system by which you unconsciously ascribe value to different species.
The closer it is in size and function to a human, the higher value it gets. You are acting out human speciesism and don’t realize it.
I choose to embrace that humans are at the top, and exercise this responsibility with gratitude and regenerative principles.
But the vegan runs from this reality, largely delegating this responsibility to corporations who leverage the delusion that one can eat in a way that causes no death. As if you can tell me with a straight face that Burger King’s Beyond Whopper isn’t causing a cascade of harm along its very long, chemically-infused, mechanically-driven, pesticide-demanding, monoculture-requiring supply chain.
You are not vegan for the animals. Just like every other organism on this planet, every single thing you consume to stay alive requires the death of something else. “Vegan” doesn’t exist.
By the way, your fact about “pus in milk” is incredibly misinformed. 1) the conflation of white blood cells with pus cells is dishonest, and likely where this bit of propaganda comes from. 2) I agree with you that “big dairy” engages in inhumane practices, keeping their cows in filth. Like previously stated, industrial dairy is nothing like a local raw dairy farm. If you visit one, you’ll see how pristine the conditions are, and how well the cows are treated. Because the HAVE to be. There is no “safety net” offered by pasteurization (a process imposed on our milk by the government for our “protection”, when it’s really to give industrial dairy farmers leeway for their disgusting practices, and also to increase shelf life—all for profits).
Grass fed, pastured raw milk is one of the healthiest things you can consume, packed with bioavailable nutrients, enzymes, and naturally occurring probiotics. I’ve watched people with “lactose intolerance” drink raw milk with zero issues.
Again I say, the enemy is not the product, but the method. Not all milk is created the same.

horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  Jordan Flower

It sounds like we could probably agree that a huge percentage of the animal products we consume are definitely less ethical than vegan alternatives? (95% ish?)

The rest could be debated.

Jordan Flower
Jordan Flower
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

I don’t think your metric of what is ethical is very well defined. And that’s not your fault. The vegan program operates on a univariate analysis: is what I’m consuming coming from an organism that was previously sentient? Any variable beyond that is essentially ignored.

On the metric of lives taken, the vegan kills more insects, small mammals, and microorganisms than an omnivore. This isn’t remotely refutable. The question comes down to why vegans defend the life of a cow far more zealously than for a gopher getting churned up by a diesel fuel burning corn harvester.

I know the cow is more valuable. In it’s life, a pastured cow regenerates grass and fertilizes soil better than any synthetic system can, making it a net carbon sink. In its death, it is likely the most nutrient dense source of sustenance on our planet—pound for pound, life for life.

horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  Jordan Flower

You can’t just make stuff up and say it isn’t remotely refutable. You really can’t. Clearly all chicken/pork results in many more deaths given the amount of crops they are fed.

To feed 100% grass fed cows huge areas of grass are mechanically cut, then mechanically bailed, then mechanically moved for winter feed. The pastures are also tilled and reseeded every 2-3 years. Moles, foxes, corvids, geese, rabbits, badger etc are routinely killed to protect pastured livestock and their feed. Insecticide use is very common on grazing animals. Cows trample insects. Etc.

If we want to compare systems, then 100% grass fed cow should be compared to veganically grown produce. Or I could compare veganically grown veg to factory chicken farming and we can see how that goes?

Incredibly disingenuous.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

Sorry but I actually live on a farm in the UK, rent a little place on one, surrounded by fields grazed by beef cattle. So I take real exception to people lying about an industry they don’t understand. The gentleman that owns the beef cattle here has awards for his contributions to local wildlife, he loves his cows like they are people and wildlife just the same. He has ponds for frogs and insects, copses for birds and hedgehogs. We actually have wildlife cameras set up on the badger sets here. So no we don’t shoot them, or string them up and cut their throats, or crucify them, or skin them alive in front of their children. None of the things you talk about are ‘routinely’ hunted in real life on a cow farm. Especially geese and badgers. They do not ever till and reseed grazing fields, they just rest them and wait for the grass to grow again, they do not spray insecticide on grazing fields. Occasionally they might spread clover seed on the top of the grass to improve the nitrogen in the soil, which is good for the grass and soil. I think its absolutely awful how misinformed you are.

Graham Perfitt
Graham Perfitt
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Keep up the good work

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Graham Perfitt

I’ll do my best 🙂

FutureProof Interactive inc
FutureProof Interactive inc
1 year ago
Reply to  Jordan Flower

For someone why uses big words you are quite uneducated. Vegans exists because we are opposed to the slave trade, animals being abused and raped repeatedly then murdered right in front of eachother. The nazis modeled concentration camps after the animal industry, and most factory farms still mirror the likes of concentration camps.

Death comes for us all. We are aware then plant horticulture can cause death to a microorganism, or bugs. The difference since you are obviously blind is that the bug lives their life then dies. The cow that is born due to its mother being raped and prodded. As soon as it’s born, if it’s female will look forward to a life of being raped repeatedly until her body can’t take it, all while living in a space so small she can’t turn around her whole life. Then she will eventually collapse, at which point she will be dragged for many yards on the ground then a truck, will be shipped to a death factory where she will watch all of her friends get murdered in front of her knowing she is next.

Then she will be hung by one foot upside down have have her throat slit, only to suffer for 5-7 minutes while being in agony from the blood choking her to death slowly while she is in immense pain.

You are a waste of human life if you do not understand this.

0 0
0 0
1 year ago

Firstly it’s a bit rich to call someone else uneducated, when the quality of your own education is so suspect.
I would point out that contrary to your complacent self-serving claim, bugs actually don’t “live their lives and then dies”. These lives are impacted or curtailed in all sorts of ways, human activity can lead to population explosions of certain bug species or extinctions for others.

They may have short lifespans but they are made shorter still or lengthened beyond normal timeframes by human interventions. A bug living for 4 months instead of 6 months is the equivalent of humans dying at 50 instead of 75. This article mentions bees which are recognised as crucial in so many ways, being impacted by agricultural practices used to produce vegan foods.

Reproduction in the animal world is overwhelmingly a transactional survival of the species affair, not an emotional one as anyone who actually observes animals would realise. And where there are mating rituals, it’s about choosing the fittest that displays the genes best suited to survival. It’s utterly bonkers to project human emotions on to them, with this mad rape analogy which simply doesn’t apply.

For bovines annual reproductions were a necessity for the species to sustain numbers that would otherwise be decimated by predators, injury, disease, droughts etc. And also to withstand infant mortality where the just-born are the most vulnerable. Your comment also seems oblivious to the fact that many diary farms have a bull in their herd, do you regard the bull as the “rapist” in their midst?

For 50,000 years there has been a human intervention with some animal species whereby a different transaction occurs, where in return for service to humans, protection from other predation is provided allowing longer lifespans for some, secure food supply etc. Maybe technological advance might make some of this transaction redundant, but there are large swathes of the developing world where this isn’t a practicality.

Last edited 1 year ago by 0 0
Chris England
Chris England
1 year ago

You clearly don’t understand the meat processing industry. I worked in one over thirty years ago and the animals died humanely. There is naturally a lot of blood and it is pretty awful if you’re squeamish but the things you describe are out of a horror fantasy and bear no relationship with reality.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago

What the f*** are you on. Here in the UK, having worked on a number of dairy farms I can categorically say all of that is absolute tosh. The latest in dairy tech here, the cows even get waterbeds to lay down on and they have plenty of room over the winter when it’s too wet for them to graze, free, outside. The parlours are absolutely pristine and there is no way in hell a farmer or a vet would kill a cow in this country by hanging it up from its feet and cutting its throat, do have any idea how hard that would be? How messy? Do you realise how heavy and strong a cow is? I would suggest actually coming out to the country side for a proper education.

0 0
0 0
1 year ago
Reply to  Jordan Flower

“The enemy here is not the product, but the method.” Totally agree. The real problem is industrialisation. Meat-wise, this has led to inhumane, factory farming and the unsustainable expectation that we can eat cheap meat three times a day. Vegan products are also subject to industrialisation, and often overlook sustainability.

Personally, I favour a traditional diet, mainly plants, with small amounts of dairy/meat/fish, all local and organic if possible.

S B
S B
1 year ago
Reply to  Jordan Flower

Your whole argument is based on that you assume that Vegans think that their lifestyle totally absent of any kind of pain/suffering/exploitation. But that is not true.
Veganism is removing as much suffering and exploitation as far as is possible. We are physical beings living on a physical world. Just our existence has an impact on the world. Vegans are aware of their impact on the world and aim to minimise their negative impact.
It’s just a fact that eating a vegan diet has less impact on the world than a diet that includes animal products. You talk about accidental crop deaths of mice etc, but that still goes on at a greater level within animal agriculture, as crops need to be grown to feed cattle etc. Not to mention the large areas of land that farm animals are on that could be re-wilded. For example, the largest cause of deforestation in the amazon is by animal agriculture.
You also have to look at basic cosystem science, of trophic levels. Everything that is in an animal that people eat has come from plants, but once you go through the trophic levels there is loss of energy, so it is an innefficient use of land and resources to feed plants to animals, then use the animals to feed humans. Yes humans needed to eat animals before modern farming practices, but meat is not a necessity for most humans any more.

Graham Perfitt
Graham Perfitt
1 year ago
Reply to  Jordan Flower

Spot on thank you

Samir Iker
Samir Iker
1 year ago

I am sure there are parts of the article that are completely accurate, wildly inaccurate or in between. The issue about veganism is not about its merits it’s the vegans.

The most dedicated vegan I know lives in an outsized house, takes an average of three flight holidays a year and has two battle tank sized SUVs parked outside their home.

You want to be one of the small minority of people who feel superior by being a vegan? Go for it. Doesn’t make a difference to the rest of us. The meat products that we have today, far from being “disgusting”, are the cleanest and best processed any generation of mankind has ever enjoyed. And I would like my steak medium rare, thank you very much.

What does make a difference is the constant preening, media attention, outsized importance and marketing, and the inevitable “environmental” regulations on meat that you jokers are pushing on the rest of us.

FutureProof Interactive inc
FutureProof Interactive inc
1 year ago
Reply to  Samir Iker

We are vegan for the animals, and we are better than you if you put your life above animals 3 meals a day. Here’s is why we are better than you:

We make a choice 3 times a day that eliminates the suffering billions of innocent animals face, that have been treated with cruelty their entire life.

We choose 3x a day to put the life of others above our own

Russell L
Russell L
1 year ago

“Here’s why we are better than you.”

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago

Cor blimey, you do realise such horrors as the holocaust were carried out by people who considered themselves better than others? This one’s high horse – Eco Fascist. Genuinely terrifying.

Graham Perfitt
Graham Perfitt
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Yep genuinely tyrannical!

Ian Stewart
Ian Stewart
1 year ago

I love milk from cows, and a good steak. Lovely!
And seeing idiots spouting nonsense too, that’s great entertainment as well. Keep it up!

Emma Hallard
Emma Hallard
1 year ago
Reply to  Ian Stewart

Wow…I can’t believe how many people on here are so aggressive to vegans.ive been vegan for 31 years now.i never shoved it down people’s throats but lived my life very openly and won people over by showing my love of life,animals,the planet,excellent music and making glorious meals they loved…whilst going away for a two year spiritual travel.I got back to UK and everything was suddenly vegan.main supermarkets stocked vegan food,vegan make up(I’d had to send away for in my teens)vegan products everywhere.i was overjoyed!I had first become vegan,obviously for the reason I loved animals,but all the health reasons soon followed too..chronic sinusitis just disappeared,and it never returned either.body felt lighter,skin always good.im 49 now and regularly get told I look 30.(I don’t smell or wear crappy clothes as one,guessing meat eater stated about vegans).i love that there are so many vegans looking to love and protect animals and the planet.i can’t understand some of the weird arguments and backlash here.someone bringing up the old,’vegans kill insects by eating plants,so why not cows’.what???!that’s the same as saying why not people too!if you’re doing something 99%right,then do it.wherever you are trying to cause the least harm in life..just do it.there is no other answer.im not even going to respond to this article,but I’m proud of the people who have called it out..I love to see that.ive seen and heard every single sad old argument against veganism,and every answer too..even biblical ones.for me,it always comes back to the same answer..ANYTHING THAT PROTECTS ANY SENTIENT BEING AND THE PLANET,IS GOOD.ANYTHING THAT CAUSES THE LEAST HARM TO ANY SENTIENT BEING AND THE PLANET AS A WHOLE,IS GOOD.it really is that simple.peolle can come up with all sorts of rubbish,dodgy details,and side stepping,but the answer is simple and always the same..anything protecting all living beings and planet earth is good..An elderly freind went vegan,2 years ago,he’d had mucus and asthma his whole life,plus various other illnesses..95%cleared up within 2months,his nurse was amazed.she actually got in touch with me.for 65 years he’d had an allergy to milk and noone had ever bothered to work it out.a great many people have discovered they have milk allergies nowadays.cows milk is too rich for human consumption,it was made for calves.you’ll actually find a lot of science finally and readily acknowledges that too.trying to put oat milk down is a bit sad.it does not cause anywhere near as much damage as agricultural and dairy farming,but I can see why dairy farmers are so worried,alt milk is here to stay..NOT just because,first and most importantly,it protects our equal and fellow creatures roaming the earth,but because it is far less damaging to the earth as a whole(in too many ways to list here)and…because a now excessive amount of people literally can’t stomache it,and realise its caused a number of ailments for years on end, clogging arteries,producing excessive mucus build up,links to various types of cancers..again the list can go on and on.in short,COWS MILK IS AND ALWAYS WAS, MADE FOR CALVES,its bad for people..its a no brainer.

stephen archer
stephen archer
1 year ago
Reply to  Emma Hallard

well, you’re shoving it down people’s throats now.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Emma Hallard

Milk for children’s health is so important they get it at school for free until 5 from the NHS:

Milk and dairy products are an important part of a young child’s diet.

They’re a good source of energy and protein, and contain a wide range of vitamins and minerals, including calcium. These will help young children build bones and keep teeth healthy.
Between the ages of 1 and 2 years, children should be given whole milk and dairy products. This is because they may not get the calories or essential vitamins they need from lower fat alternatives.

After the age of 2, children can gradually move to semi-skimmed milk as a drink, as long as they’re eating a varied and balanced diet and growing well.

Do not give skimmed or 1% fat milk as a drink to children under 5 years old. It does not contain enough calories and other important nutrients for young children.

Children between the ages of 1 and 3 need to have around 350mg of calcium a day. About 300ml of milk (just over half a pint) would provide this.
Remember that milk and dairy foods are good sources of important nutrients, so do not cut them out of your or your child’s diet without first speaking to a GP or dietitian.

If you’re not able to, or choose not to, eat dairy products, you may not be getting enough calcium in your diet.
Source:
https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/food-types/milk-and-dairy-nutrition/#:~:text=Milk%20in%20your%20child's%20diet,bones%20and%20keep%20teeth%20healthy.

Last edited 1 year ago by B Emery
Ian Stewart
Ian Stewart
1 year ago

Just researched your supposed scientific facts in your comments and unsurprisingly they don’t stack up – as you’d expect of someone who describes animal husbandry as rape. Your use of the term pus is merely to scare people, and no doubt it works with those who are less well informed.

Brian Villanueva
Brian Villanueva
1 year ago

You’re welcome to be vegan “for the animals”, but don’t pretend your choice is rooted in your position as a “data scientist”.
The article is describing sustainable, pastoral agriculture. There is simply no comparison between that and industrial livestock farming. In terms of usable protein, a pig fed scraps and grazing can outproduce irrigated, fertilized land on a per acre basis. The most efficient crop in terms of caloric density is corn; in terms of protein density per acre it’s soybeans… if you have irrigation and chemical fertilizer. If not, your family is more likely to survive if you have the pig.
Be vegan if it makes you feel better. But don’t pretend it’s not a 1st world, niche choice. And who is raping livestock? That’s a little hyperbolic.

horti i
horti i
1 year ago

So eating grass fed organic pork and beef and dairy isn’t a first world choice? But eating lentils is? Ok.

0 0
0 0
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

Eating grass-fed, organic products are how our ancestors would have eaten. By eating this way, I am also supporting regenerative farming, increased wildlife and improved animal welfare. This is how we used to eat before industrialisation, factory farming, factory-made fertilisers etc

It is the method of production that is the enemy.

Emma Hallard
Emma Hallard
1 year ago

Beautifully put Future proof interactive.

Richard Carmichael
Richard Carmichael
1 year ago

Agree. Article has bogus facts, perverse arguments and offers NO solutions for reducing animal agriculture’s environmental impact. Irresponsible journalism. As the author knows, dairy is made cheaper due to generous farm payments for livestock and not making dairy farmers pay for the negative externalities from production. A simple graphic from some actual hard data, below, showing that all plant milks have much smaller footprints than dairy milk… https://ourworldindata.org/environmental-impact-milks

Chris England
Chris England
1 year ago

That’s not based on nutrition though is it- which is a point everyone on this thread is missing. Flavoured water doesn’t provide the stuff that you need to live on.
Statistics work in many ways

Simon Adams
Simon Adams
1 year ago

The key point everyone seems to be ignoring is that US methods of farming are terrible – bad for the environment, bad for consumers, and bad for the welfare of livestock. European farmers have huge pressure from supermarkets to be as “efficient” as these ‘factory farming’ methods are, despite the fact we have some basic regulations to avoid the worst excesses.

If we all joined together to support more natural methods of farming that work with nature and respect the dignity of living creatures, then we could drink dairy or oat milk as we prefer. Instead we have all kinds of divisive ‘interest groups’ working to muddy the waters on what should be common decency and common sense.

Sam McGowan
Sam McGowan
1 year ago

Veganism is just that, an ism, a philosophy or belief. There is no science involved.

h

Louise Richardson louisevrichardson@gmail.com
Louise Richardson louisevrichardson@gmail.com
1 year ago

Vegan propaganda. Vegans actually kill thousands of sentient animals per acre of farmland for their food–including rabbits and domestic cats. Traditional farming requires extensive use of petro chemicals for fertilizer. Tilling releases thousands of pounds of carbon from the soil every year. The transporting of factory-made fake vegan food from factory to table uses at least as much carbon as any transporting of local beef to table. Veganism is a first world ideology that does nothing to save animals or the planet, but actually the other way around.

Michael Layman
Michael Layman
1 year ago

Your reply is an emotional one, based on your “vegan” bias. The article addresses the global reality, not affluent tiny minority of “alt milk” drinkers.
““pastoralism is increasingly recognised as one of the most sustainable production systems on the planet and plays a major role in safeguarding ecosystems and biodiversity in natural grasslands and rangelands”.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago

What’s going on with this website? This has 653 likes, I’ve not seen a comment with so many up ticks so far, especially when these comments normally errr on the right…. weird.
Also if you’re a data scientist, your job relies on enormous amounts of fossil fuels, rare earth’s for your tech, ‘raping’ the earth since you love that terminology, cheap Chinese, probably child labour to make that tech. Also how was all that data you analyse collected? After the Cambridge analytica scandal I’m warey of data scientists. Maybe you need to get a ‘proper job’.
British farmers work very hard, their importance, at the moment especially, should not be overlooked and they are having a very hard time at the moment. If ww3 kicks off you’re going to need them. The crap you have spouted in these comments amounts to nothing more than dangerous propaganda.

Chris Bredge
Chris Bredge
1 year ago
Reply to  B Emery

Yes, it’s very odd how many upticks these vegan activists are generating on this site. I’ve also noticed that most of them are new names to this sites. I’m guessing that links to this article are being spread via social media with a request that those sympathetic to the cause join in.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Chris Bredge

Think you’re right!
Their swarming power is a bit scary, bearing in mind the info they are sharing is not reflective of British farming, would love to know if they’re American. Might be helpful to have a marker of some description on our user names so you know where a commenter comes from, American farming is much more heavily industrialised than British farming, this might account for their more extreme perspective and their ignorance of how a British dairy farm is actually run. Or they run an oat milk company, even their user name sounds corporate ‘futureproof interactive inc.’

Kaylee Guise
Kaylee Guise
1 year ago

I’m not sure about the accuracy of the statistics, but it’s good to start conversations about how vegan alternatives aren’t totally harmless. Are they better? I believe so. I’m not vegan, but I believe farming animals has gotten far too industrialized to ever hope to be ethical again in my lifetime.

But the vegan attitude of, “our way is the only, completely ethical way to consume” is inaccurate and it drives people away. Nobody likes to be told their values are wrong and these values are right. The aggressive tactics of vegans aren’t the way to go.

People who disagree with vegans are going to stand even more firmly in their beliefs when they see people pouring milk all over the grocer’s floor. “What a bunch of unhinged people, and what a waste of product that somebody could use,” is what most will think. Others who have certain political beliefs view vegan activists as political enemies on top of that.

Because above all, activists who do stuff like this are simply annoying, even to many of those who agree with their motives! They should be encouraging people to question their dairy/meat-based values, not treat dairy/meat consumers like public enemy number one. Right now, vegans aren’t really doing their cause many favors.

Roddy Campbell
Roddy Campbell
1 year ago

By pus cells, are you referring to holocrine secretion?

Caroline Minnear
Caroline Minnear
1 year ago

Knowing people that have been raped and knowing dairy farmers that AI their dairy cattle I can tell you the two things are very different.

jason whittle
jason whittle
1 year ago

As a cleantech investor focused on renewables and recycling, I happen to also own an organic dairy farm. The ‘facts’ on animal husbandry are so misleading that its hard to know where to start. But 4 important points. i) Alpine pastures above 750m are not suitable for arable farming, which is where all our farm’s cows roam. Ecowarriors do not calculate even based on average cow emissions, but use figures from the worst corn fed stock-hold farms. ii) Most arable farms are eco-deserts with monoculture, our pastures are rich ecosystems with dozens of grasses, insects, and fungal systems. iii) When reviewing switching from dairy to arable farming we found ourselves having to look at where to source our manure! iv) Cow burps represent 0.18% of climate change emissions compared to IT infrastructure at 2.5%. I suggest Ecowarriors spend less time on their PCs and more time in nature….

Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago
Reply to  jason whittle

You say that like it would be a 1 to 1 swap when in actuality it would involve rewilding many livestock farms leading to increased biodiversity and saving many species.

Plants take far less space to grow so we wouldn’t need all the farm land we currently have.

Not to mention funding farmers switching would be far cheaper than the annual subsidies the meat and dairy industry receive.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

so long as we can hunt and shoot over your land, One supposes that you can do anything you like with it..

mimi McHale
mimi McHale
1 year ago
Reply to  jason whittle

Right ON! We use organic, grass fed milk, cream, beef, chicken and whatever. We don’t eat Round-UP and we don’t kill insects.

horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  mimi McHale

What’s wrong with eating a bit of roundup? Is it a probable carcinogen? You know … like all meat. Although processed meat is “known” to cause cancer of course.

Grass fed does kill insects. It also uses huge areas of land that could otherwise be wonderful diverse habitats for insects.

Hopefully you don’t eat much of that stuff. If we all did we would require several Earth’s worth of grazing land.

Last edited 1 year ago by horti i
Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago

Conveniently all the points you make relate to America, strange from an English farmer.

Could it be because soya for soy milk in the UK is grown in the Netherlands?

Or that almonds for almond milk here is grown in the Mediterranean from rain water?

How weird that you left these facts out whilst pushing an anti plant milk agenda.

You also mention the risk of kidney disease from oat milk, how about the risk of breast, ovarian and prostate cancer from dairy? The link to heart disease?

It’s not “natural” for humans to consume dairy, we’re not baby cows.

Arkadian X
Arkadian X
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

I could buy most of your arguments, but if it wasn’t for your last sentence that ruins it all. Pity.

Craig Sanders
Craig Sanders
1 year ago
Reply to  Arkadian X

The truth ruins it? It’s the absolute truth that humans don’t need the milk from another species.

CHARLES STANHOPE
CHARLES STANHOPE
1 year ago
Reply to  Craig Sanders

So it’s only breast milk?
Sadly doesn’t work for cannibalism, which has a few ‘genetic’ problems, or so I am informed.

horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  Arkadian X

You don’t think it’s a little odd that we breastfeed from a different species into old age?

A Spetzari
A Spetzari
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

We also cover the food we grow in faeces to make it grow better.
Is that normal? Suppose not by your highly subjective modern anthropomorphic viewpoint.
But since we’ve been doing these things for thousands of years, compared to making milk from random grains and fruits in the last decades, I think we can decide for ourselves what is “odd” and what is not.

Craig Sanders
Craig Sanders
1 year ago
Reply to  A Spetzari

Humans had slaves for thousands of years as well so that’s a failsafe fallacy if ever I’ve read one. Evolve and stop abusing animals.

A Spetzari
A Spetzari
1 year ago
Reply to  Craig Sanders

That’s a completely different topic – we’re talking about agriculture remember?
The history of agriculture is an integral part of humans’ survival as a species and is inextricably linked to the ecology of the planet. Being in denial about this is not going to get you anywhere.

Last edited 1 year ago by A Spetzari
Thomas Wagner
Thomas Wagner
1 year ago
Reply to  Craig Sanders

Do you have affidavits from cows that they feel abused? Isn’t it speciesist to presume to speak for another sentient being without her consent?

horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  Thomas Wagner

Yep. That’s what I said to the last person who tried to stop me from sticking my puppy in a rack and forcing a metal rod up her. Bit disrespectful of them to speak on her behalf and assume her feelings. She might love it. She also might be looking forward to getting shot in the head later. Let animals speak for themselves I say and until then anything goes.

Last edited 1 year ago by horti i
Alphonse Pfarti
Alphonse Pfarti
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

Why not ask some of the resident of Mongolia, to whom the author refers?

Last edited 1 year ago by Alphonse Pfarti
Miriam Yagud
Miriam Yagud
1 year ago
Reply to  Arkadian X

Humans are not baby cows sowe do not need baby cows milk. What about that statement is untrue?

Alphonse Pfarti
Alphonse Pfarti
1 year ago
Reply to  Miriam Yagud

It’s a non-sequitur.

M. Jamieson
M. Jamieson
1 year ago
Reply to  Miriam Yagud

Humans have made very good use of the calories and nutrients of milk in certain climates, which is why some of us have evolved to be able to drink and digest milk into adulthood. In northern climates it’s an important way to take the energy and nutrients of grass grown in summer and turn it into a product that is high in fat and protein and can be stored for long periods without refrigeration, to be eaten when there is no grass growing.

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  Arkadian X

Yeh that last sentence ‘we’re not baby cows’ is straight out of cowspiracy on Netflix, can tell every commenter on here that has watched and been completely sucked in by it. Made by Americans, absolutely packed with propaganda, cherry picked figures, misrepresentation and half truths. Not representative of British farming, maybe American factory farms but that’s about it. https://www.ethicalomnivore.org/cowspiracy-debunked/

horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

I hope she understands that if she wants to use plant milks possibly containing elements of glyphosate which are “likely carcinogenic” as a reason not to drink them…she is also ruling out all meat consumption. I’m sure she’s consistent.

If the issue is pesticide use then that also applies to dairy milk.

I’m also pretty sure daisy won’t be laughing when she is being fisted deep in the a**s so her rectal wall can be manipulated to simultaneously allow a metal rod to be forced up her to scrape manually collected bull semen onto her cervix…or when her newborn child is being removed….or when she is about to be shot in the head.

Last edited 1 year ago by horti i
horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

I hope she understands that if she wants to use plant milks possibly containing elements of glyphosate which are “likely carcinogenic” as a reason not to drink them…she is also ruling out all meat consumption.

If the issue is pesticide use then that also applies to dairy milk.

If her argument about nutrients per co2e for oat milk is important we should definitely be drinking soy milk. This article is so confused.

I’m also pretty sure daisy won’t be laughing when she is being fisted deep so her rectal wall can be manipulated to simultaneously allow a metal rod to be forced up her…or when her newborn child is being removed….or when she is about to be shot in the head.

Last edited 1 year ago by horti i
Linda Hutchinson
Linda Hutchinson
1 year ago

You can make all the arguments that you want in favour or against oat milk, but the clincher is – oat milk is disgusting in tea.

Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago

Personal taste. I drank oat milk in tea before I ever went vegan because I preferred the taste.

Not to mention once you go vegan your sense of smell improves and milk smells vile.

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

it also starts to taste vile in tea – the asians know that you dont put ANY rubbish in tea !

Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 year ago

There’s a peculiar illogic to arguments that, in order to protect animals from cruelty we should make them extinct. It’s reminiscent of early Fabianism and the idea that the best way to help the proles would be to sterilise them, or, as propounded by GBS, simply slaughter a scientifically determined proportion of them.

Progressivism doesn’t get any less toxic, does it?

Albireo Double
Albireo Double
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

And it’s hard to see how it can get any more toxic. So with a bit of luck, we might be reaching “peak progressivism”.

horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

So in a hypothetical where Labrador puppies only exist to be bred into existence specifically to be shot in the head, electrocuted or gassed at a few months old for fur coats we should seek to continue that? You would be in favour of it rather than against it?

I also don’t think cows would go extinct…

Last edited 1 year ago by horti i
Hugh Bryant
Hugh Bryant
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

No, but I think straw men should be killed in the most inhumane way possible.

horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

No? Ok. Well that’s a “peculiary illogical” position you’re taking there given that the labs would go extinct. That’s the same position vegans take.

It’s also not a straw man. We need clothes for warmth and food for energy…but Fur coats and meat are equally unecessary.

Last edited 1 year ago by horti i
chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  Hugh Bryant

That is a pretty silly comment Hugh – and has just cost you any credibility !!

Chris Bredge
Chris Bredge
1 year ago
Reply to  chris sullivan

Who elected you as credibility police then? You seem to lack any awareness of humour or irony.

chris Barton
chris Barton
1 year ago

Just have to say that the photos from these protests i noticed its always the same kind of weirdo’s. I’m sure a lot of these people would have been puritans back in the day but Christianity is like so unfashionable these days.

Craig Sanders
Craig Sanders
1 year ago
Reply to  chris Barton

It’s ‘wierdos’ like you mention that get change in the world whilst you sit on your arse and do nothing for mankind.

A Willis
A Willis
1 year ago
Reply to  Craig Sanders

Balderdash.
What changed the world for the better were the people who gave us X-rays, penicillin, Pasteurisation, discovered circulation, anaethsetics. Eccentric, perhaps, but not ‘wierdos’.
The ‘wierdos’ gave us serial murders, rapists and the invasion of the Ukraine.

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  A Willis

that is just silly-you have just lost credibility !

Simon Roper
Simon Roper
1 year ago
Reply to  Craig Sanders

Sorry, but I strongly suspect that people like this do these things for their own benefit, and what they perceive to be the animals’ benefit (which is highly debatable at best). They certainly aren’t doing it for the benefit of the population at large. I know this because no activists have bothered to ask us, but have instead decided that hectoring us and using emotive anthropomorphic language (e.g. ‘rape’) that has no meaning in this context is the way to go.

chris Barton
chris Barton
1 year ago
Reply to  Craig Sanders

Hi Craig, Look at recent events in Sri Lanka for what their ideas do for mankind.

Roma B.
Roma B.
1 year ago

Now there’s a war between vegans & non vegans? Every group is fighting with another. It’s either political, environmental or personal! What a f**ked up world we live in! â˜č

Sam Sky
Sam Sky
1 year ago
Reply to  Roma B.

I mean at work there seems to be people advocating only eating meat and people only eating vegetables. Or trying to optimise their diets with various extensive lists of approved or forbidden foods.
I miss the days when the vast majority people just ate the food that was available (usually traditional dishes) because being fussy and diet-obsessed was a sign of being an insufferable weirdo. And they didn’t get fat because the food wasn’t heavily processed and addictive.

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  Roma B.

Vegans dont kill people so would lead to quite a peaceful world !!

Dave Hopkins
Dave Hopkins
1 year ago

Wow, the vegans reading Unherd seem to be swarm-attacking the author here. I also am a small-holding farmer (sheep and hens) and yet I get their point about the cruelty of confining animals and factory farming. I too am careful not to eat anything that involves this kind of inhumane treatment of animals and few things cause me more distress than the suffering, say, of an intelligent animal like a pig in a confined, factory-like space. We, my partner and I, like to say that our animals are “self-actualized” (our dogs especially), that is, allowed to follow their nature, to fulfil themselves. This, I think, is critical to humane animal farming.
It certainly clarifies this divisive issue if we put aside methane emissions (for even vegans self-report to have issues with “gas”), and focus on animal welfare. For then we can look at domesticated animals in general and consider whether the life of a heritage-breed dairy cow on pasture, say, — protected from predators, nursed back to health when ill, treated in an emotionally attuned way to avoid stress — is better than that of its wild ancestors. Domestication has transformed most domesticated animals and the relationship of a farmer to his cows or sheep or chickens or dogs, is quite a wonderful thing, beneficial and enriching, it seems, for both parties. A well-written account of this was the book Sheepish: Two Women, Fifty Sheep, and Enough Wool to Save the Planet, about two gals who farmed sheep in the Midwest (Minnesota) and the author actually exclaimed at one point that “I would never eat an animal that I haven’t looked in the face and loved!” (quoting from memory here).

Aaron James
Aaron James
1 year ago
Reply to  Dave Hopkins

That’s how I do it….Blam!, Pizza……..

Tom Watson
Tom Watson
1 year ago

f**k me, I never knew there were so many angry vegans on this site. A little disappointed in the mods tbh.

Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Watson

Angry? How am I angry?

I’m laughing at how ridiculously incorrect this article is.

You know dairy farmers are worrying when they start posting articles with false statistics to make plant milks look bad.

If your only way to make plant milks look bad is to lie about statistics then silence those who correct them maybe it’s time to self reflect eh?

Albireo Double
Albireo Double
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

Gosh yes. I’ll check my lactate-privilege.
I wouldn’t want to “spark” a Twitter pout-off.

Tom Watson
Tom Watson
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

(Said the not at all angry man lol)

Probably something to do with the lack of bioavailable protein in your diet. And the lingering psychic damage caused by effectively putting yourself on the same moral plane as plankton, because you refuse to distinguish between higher and lower forms of life.

Enjoy your megacorp sugar-slop.

horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Watson

You know the rational debate is being lost when comments like these are being made

B Emery
B Emery
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

Megacorp sugar slop is the best thing I’ve read all day, I might go stick that all over the alt milk departments of local supermarkets.

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Watson

Another silly comment – the animal killers , like the article’s author, are getting sillier and sillier……….

Kenda Grant
Kenda Grant
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

“If your only way to make plant milks look bad is to lie about statistics then silence those who correct them maybe it’s time to self reflect eh?”
Huh? This is ironic. This is what happened to anyone who challenged the narrative (climate, covid, etc.) the past 2+ years. It got so bad that comments were (and still are) hidden, deleted and the author banned. At least you can comment and I can agree, disagree and/or have a discussion with you. Only when people are silenced or their ideas mocked do they see the impact of censorship.

Gordon Buckman
Gordon Buckman
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

Plant milks are a joke on you. Only mammals make milk. Plants do not. You and your ilk are dupes, without the gorm to see it.

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  Gordon Buckman

um duped, how so – how about useful comment vs more silliness plz

Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Watson

They’re angry because they don’t eat meat

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Watson

I’m not sure there are that many. It seems more like two or three people posting a dozen comments each. Because they’re so loud and persistent, it seems like there are more of them. Let’s be thankful they just scream, rant, and glue themselves to things rather blow up buildings and people like jihadists. Not all Puritanism is equally dangerous.

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Jolly
Kieren Yapp
Kieren Yapp
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

And at least they aren’t shooting up schools like right wingers in America hey?

Steve Jolly
Steve Jolly
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

Yes, that’s pretty much exactly what I just said using a different example. Jihadists and school shooters belong in the same category, the category being people who should be executed as soon as possible. Not sure why you felt compelled to post this, other than the fact you’ve posted like 50 comments for this article. You seem devoted to your cause, I concede, but your tactics are likely to alienate people who might agree with part or all of your argument. Some of your criticisms have been on point. The numbers and facts the author cites are somewhat arguable and arbitrary. Most issues are not black and white, and statistics are apt to be fudged to serve a point these days. All sides are guilty of this. He cites costs of various kinds of synthetic milk without considering the costs of alternatives in some cases. He cites carcinogens that are ubiquitous in pretty much all farming and so are more or less irrelevant to the topic. He talks about livestock raising as if it’s all traditional and done on pasture land, without considering that a considerable amount of farming is of the industrial variety, which is a good deal less appealing than cattle grazing on the open range. He also overuses sarcasm to the point it makes him seem like a know-it-all. This was not as well written as most of what I see on Unherd, though it wasn’t the worst either. Still, your tone and the sheer volume of your comments undermine your case. You’re making the author’s case stronger, not weaker, by presenting your counter-arguments in a very judgmental and insulting way.

Last edited 1 year ago by Steve Jolly
Martin Bollis
Martin Bollis
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

Very well put. It feels like somebody at Eco central alerted the Rapid Refute Force that an heretical article had been published and must be attacked.

Aaron James
Aaron James
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

really – because if you do not vote Bernie that is just what one does…

Mike Wylde
Mike Wylde
1 year ago
Reply to  Kieren Yapp

As they’re always so angry are you sure the shooters are not vegan?

Alphonse Pfarti
Alphonse Pfarti
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Jolly

Reasonable point, but still no reason to tolerate them. My local Waitrose in ‘Auld Reekie’ was one of the venues for their purity spiral performance art theatre pop-ups. Notably, this did not go on tour to the Morrisons or Lidl in the neighbouring, and somewhat earthier, districts of West Pilton and Granton.

Last edited 1 year ago by Alphonse Pfarti
Alphonse Pfarti
Alphonse Pfarti
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Watson

My only criticism is that ‘angry vegans’ is terribly tautological. Precision has its own rewards.

Ethniciodo Rodenydo
Ethniciodo Rodenydo
1 year ago
Reply to  Tom Watson

The most disturbing thing about this article is the mob it on which it has shone a light.
I cannot see I have seen man of the names on Unherd before

Saul D
Saul D
1 year ago

The cow fart theory of methane reduction is bizarre. Animals produce gases when they eat. The methane will be produced whether we eat the animals or not. No-meat-no-methane only works if the animals are eliminated or eradicated. Are they really demanding we cull all the beasts?

horti i
horti i
1 year ago
Reply to  Saul D

No just that we don’t breed more into existence. Although culling them all once would still be preferable to killing billions every year indefinitely.

Also focusing just on a reduction in direct emissions ignores the main potential benefit. The increase in sequestration that would simultaneously occur.

gabrielle sinclair
gabrielle sinclair
1 year ago
Reply to  horti i

Nature kills billions of animals every year, what are you going to do about predation on the serengeti, or rewilded areas?

horti i
horti i
1 year ago

Nothing wild animals existing isn’t an ethical problem. Would you ask that to someone campaigning against domestic dog abuse? Genuine question.

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago

Only humans kill millions of big animals per year – wake up !!

Malcolm Webb
Malcolm Webb
1 year ago

I must say however, whatever the rights and wrongs of this, I am thoroughly fed up with “activists” taking direct action to gain mass media attention careless of the negative impacts which their selfish and increasingly outlandish attention seeking has on the lives of others, including those who have to clear up after them.

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  Malcolm Webb

I agree – as a vegan !! we are mostly actually peace loving folk….

Bob Smalser
Bob Smalser
1 year ago

Natural marshes and wetlands produce more methane than cows, yet we pour millions into programs to save and even increase those. And North America’s ecosystems evolved for millions of years with more native ungulates than the number of current cows. Your Church of Climate largely ignores science.

Martin Bollis
Martin Bollis
1 year ago

Interesting thread. I was unaware of the widespread use of rape in protein production. Are all these cows artificially inseminated without even buying them dinner?

I shall add AFAC, All Farmers Are Cads, underneath my pronouns.

A Spetzari
A Spetzari
1 year ago
Reply to  Martin Bollis

I am still reeling from when my cat had kittens. Did the neighbourhood tomcat get consent?! She went from loving Whiskers to only eating Felix now.
How is my cat handling it? I can only tell that she’s curled up on the sofa right now. She is purring but inside who knows.

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago
Reply to  A Spetzari

yes but if you kill her for dinner ??

Albireo Double
Albireo Double
1 year ago

In my experience, vegans can be a bit hairy and smelly, and rather boring and narcissistic. Apart from that, they’re just about OK, except for the smugness and the farts.

Last edited 1 year ago by Albireo Double
Cathy Carron
Cathy Carron
1 year ago
Reply to  Albireo Double

To ‘hairy & smelly’ let’s add ‘ self-righteous & insufferable’.

Nicky Samengo-Turner
Nicky Samengo-Turner
1 year ago
Reply to  Cathy Carron

Vegan women tend to grow their own tights…

chris sullivan
chris sullivan
1 year ago

oops another silly comment – the discussion sure brings out written foolishness from the animal killers….

Arkadian X
Arkadian X
1 year ago

I liked the article, but for this bit which really irked me:
“Almond growers invariably douse their crop in quant