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Eating Vegan and Locally – the ethical debate

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Thank you for sharing this. It is such an important consideration not only to be ecologically sensible but also because we simply cannot depend on industrial globalised society and it’s heavily government subsidized cheap long distance shipping continuing as it has indefinitely.
I have a wonderful book you might like as it’s written for your climate in Britain. It is called How to Make a Forest Garden by Patrick Whitefield. It’s a permaculture based system using a lot of perennial food crops that work together so once started very little work or input is required to obtain a lot of food. Many nut trees grow well in Britain-if you like almonds ive seen one called Halls Hardy Almond in the garden catalog that should do well there, and I don’t recall the name but there is s fruit tree whose pits are like almonds so double the food from one tree. I’ve been ordering chia seeds from far away but hoping to grow my own soon. Very nutritious for such small space to grow and store! Amaranth is another wonderful garden flower and highly nutritious grain all in one. I eat a lot of my own fruit from my garden but had sort of put localization of my diet in the background til I saw your post. It was something I aim for (I only buy Florida produce) but had not been seriously paying attention to. We grow everything in Florida almost but most fresh food in the store comes from California or Chile (!!). Even our big famous crop-orange juice is now “blended” with concentrate shipped from Brazil. To get canned/tinned beans organic they are mostly from China.
Another great book for anyone who wants to grow food easily is Perennial Vegetables by Eric Toensmeier. I’ve been in awe and a bit jealous of the amazing permaculture and Transition movement participation in Britain but I guess if it’s not in your local area it isn’t very useful for you. The lovely thing about being vegan is so many types of beans that grow so easily(I have read that scarlet runner beans can be perennial in parts of Britain), and grainlike crops like chia and amaranth that grow quickly and produce a lot of seeds in small areas. Unlike other diets we can grow a lot of what we need for good nutrition. I can’t have nuts but they are another vegan advantage to grow. The only thing that tempted me away from being vegan was my pet chicken (who is gone now, she was a rescue from factory farm and wasn’t supposed to be able to live more than 6weeks but she did:-)

Down the Forest Path

“Is it more ethical and sustainable to eat a vegan diet which relies on the oil industry or a vegetarian diet with small amounts of eggs and dairy products from locally produced organic sources where one can make a relationship with the creatures? Do you disagree that a balanced vegan diet relies on imported food and that I am just creating problems for myself?”

(Taken from the Meat Eaters, Vegetarians and Vegans Ethical Debate on The Druid Network’s Ethics Pages Here)

Some very good questions were raised during this ethical debate, which I have been pondering ever since I went vegan. With the world’s dwindling oil supplies and the other costs to food travel – ie. carbon emissions, it has played largely upon my mind. Is it more ethical for me personally to eat lentils and quinoa grown in a country far away and imported at the expense of…

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Author: ohnwentsya

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