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Thursday, March 09, 2006

Coffee bad...Noooooooooooo!

I read some rather disheartening news about coffee yesterday in New Scientists feature article about agricultural water use. Coffee was the worst offender taking 20,000 litres to make a kilo of coffee! In comparison, it took 11,000 litres of water to make a Quarter-pounder and 5000 to make 1kg of cheese and 2000 to make a litre of milk. In a world where water is becoming scarcer, it makes me think about how much of it I drink and also reminds me to appreciate it a lot more. Out at training this morning, one of the guys suggested that I get fair-trade coffee so at least the growers are getting a good deal. I suppose the important thing is that we realise what goes in to producing a lot of the things we take for granted.

Last night on Jamie Oliver's show they showed him killing a lamb to eat with a family he was living with in rural Italy. He made a really good point that if you're not prepared to find out what really happens to all the animals you eat, then maybe you shouldn't be eating them. So many people are detached from the food that they eat, that they find the death of animals repulsive, but have no problem eating the same animals. I am so glad they showed it. I don't eat meat myself, but anything showing the reality of eating meat is a good thing I think. Not that a lamb raised on a picturesque farm and slaughtered very gently by a squirming pommie chef is anywhere near the conditions of a crowded, dirty and compassionless abbatoir, but it does show people that an animal has to be killed so that you can eat your lamb roast.

6 comments:

expozay said...

I eat meat. Could I kill it? Absolutely no way. If I had to kill it, I wouldn't eat it. Having said that, I don't eat lamb or veal (too young to kill) don't eat pig (too smart) but do eat cows and chicken. And you have highlighted the conundrum I face every day- that I couldn't do it to these animals myself.

It's tough. I think the only reason I do eat it is to avoid being high-maintenance. Going out to dinner with colleagues or friends is just so difficult if you don't eat meat and I don't like asking for special consideration.

But it's something that I grapple with daily.

I drink coffee too. You'd better shoot me now.

Sekhmet said...

I saw that one too....I thought it was a great point that he made.

I have some yummy fair trade coffee. From what I know, chocolate and coffee are the worst offenders when it comes to exploiting farmers....at least with the fair trade stuff you know that they are being paid a decent amount, I think it's worth paying the extra for....now where did I put the Green & Blacks????

D said...

I do not eat meat, however I do eat eggs. Knowing how most chickens are raised and treated that produce much of our eggs truly bothers me. My daughter is doing a research paper on slaughter houses and is seriously considering becoming a vegetarian again. (She tried and it lasted about 6 months.) If most people knew the atrocities that take place in these slaughterhouses or knew of the mistreatment of the cows and chickens that produce milk and eggs, perhaps they would push for reforms or simply stop eating those products. The whole thing is horrifying and I truly cannot understand how this is an acceptable practice worldwide.

I love coffee. I've never heard of the Fair Trade coffee brand nor did I realize there were any issues w/regard to coffee farmers. Thanks for bringing up the subject.

E-Speed said...

I struggle with eat meat constantly. I tried to explain to my friends that I couldn't kill an animal if I had too and therefore shouldn't be allowed to eat meat...but when your husband works at a Butcher Block that doesn't go over so well.

I try to console myself that the chicken we eat is Amish raised...

CJ said...

I watched that show the other night - not exactly vegetarian-friendly! I grew up on a farm so saw sheep and cattle being killed for consumption. It was part of living on a farm - you didn't buy your meat wrapped in plastic from the fridge section of the supermarket. These days I prefer not to eat meat.

About the coffee - it is disheartening news but I will ensure I really appreciate my coffee even more now! And about those espresso recipes from the coffee show - yup, they look pretty good and I hope to try them one day!

Susan said...

It's a lie Dave. A plot by the tea companies around the world. Drink the coffee, be happy, be free. Coffee good. Say it with me. Coffee is good.