Monday, January 17, 2011

It's My VegDay

Good Morning, Kittens.

Eleven years ago today, I became a(n ovo-lacto) vegetarian. I had recently finished my first semester in graduate school in an international environmental policy program. During the semester, one of the books we read was Peter Singer's Animal Liberation. Although I understood the animal cruelty argument, what truly resonated with me was how environmentally damaging the raising of animals for food is.

The more I thought about it, the more I came to realize that, if I wanted a career in an environmental field, I would need to make some serious changes to my life and habits. How could I try to convince other people to work to improve the environment, if I couldn't make those changes myself?

So, I resolved that I would become a vegetarian ... right after my Millennial Trip to Beijing (aka Land of Delicious Meats). While in Beijing, I gorged on many, many yummy meaty foods - duck, lamb, pig. Nom Nom Nom. On the flight back to the United States, I requested all vegetarian meals ... and I haven't eaten meat since (well, ok. I have had a shrimp or two. And if meat is hidden in a food I eat and I don't know it (i.e. used in broth), I give myself a pass. These things happen).

So. 11 years. Yay me.

As I was thinking about this, I wondered how much meat *haven't* I eaten. After doing some (very) cursory internet research. It looks like Americans eat about 11 ounces of meat per day. That seems like a lot. And I don't really eat breakfast. Maybe I would eat about 8 ounces of meat per day?

That's 2920 ounces of meat per year.
Thus, in eleven years I haven't eaten 32120 ounces of meat.
Which is approximately 2008 pounds of meat.
Which is just over a ton.

And what weighs a ton?

2 steer.


And a steer produces about 715 lbs of meat.

So, really, I haven't eaten 3 cows.

Isn't that sweet?

Have a great day! My weekend update will be posted tomorrow.


  1. 11 years and only 3 cows in 11 years? That doesn't seem like much.

  2. I know I only eat 6-8 oz a day, if that, but still, I'm impressed that you just quite cold turkey after a Chinese meat buffet. Great job.

  3. I wish that I had thought to take note of the exact day that I went vegetarian. It was sometime during my freshman year of high school (which makes it 15 years ago). On top of that, I went vegan about 2 years and a month ago. Does that mean that I've saved like 4 or 5 cows, and they're all engorged and about to burst with milk?

  4. Don't worry VUBOQ, I'm fairly certain I've eaten your three cows and probably one or two of Adam's, in those eleven years. I DO love me a nice steak. :)

    But good for you for being so disciplined AND for walking the walk along with talking the talk!


  5. on Food, Inc they say the average meat-eating person eats 200 lbs of meet per year.

    Makes sense. For people who eat bacon or sausage or ham in the morning, lunch meat for lunch, pork chops or chicken or whatever for dinner. whether all three or a combo of them, it adds up.

    I'm not a strict vegetarian, but I'd be surprised if I ate 5 lbs of meat in a year. Maybe 10 in an off year. Or on. Whatever one applies.

    I'm proud of you!!!