Tuesday, January 05, 2010
Sustainable Eating: A New Year's Pledge
My New Year’s resolution is to eat sustainably. This means that I’ll do my best not to contribute to the processed food market that’s run entirely on greed with an absolute disregard for human health. If you’re familiar with the books Fast Food Nation, Fatland, or anything by Michael Pollen you know the industry of which I speak. I’m done putting money in those people’s pockets, at least when I know I’m doing it.
This doesn’t mean that I’m a vegan, vegetarian, Paleoist, low carber, Zoneian, or belong to any type of cult following. It simply means that I’ll reflect on the food that I eat and where it came from and make my decisions from there. Given the strange food culture we’ve created this is going to be anything but simple to accomplish.
The broad strokes look like this. I will only eat animals when I know who killed them and how they spent their time on earth. For practical purposes this makes me vegetarian, at least until I make it up to Bozeman to delve into Josh’s freezer full of elk. I can’t eat fish because every fishery in the US has a mercury warning associated with it due to coal processing. The oceans are even worse. The only sustainable ocean creature to eat seems to be squid because their populations are booming as their natural predators are disappearing. I’ll do the best I can to buy local and avoid mass produced products made from the by products of genetically modified corn and soy production.
The broad strokes will be challenging, especially when traveling. Beyond this my goal is to do a better job producing my own food. I don’t garden and barely cook, so this is going to require a lot of learning. But at the rate we’re soiling our own cage these are likely to become survival skills in my lifetime so I’d better become proficient.
I’ll be writing more on mercury in the future. I recently had the pleasure of meeting Robert Kennedy Jr. You may not know much about mercury but consider that “1 out of every 6 women in the US now has mercury levels high enough to put their kids at risk for major illness.” He doesn’t get to mercury until 7:30 if you want to scroll ahead, though he’s making a case in the intro.