We are increasingly being told that eating meat, paricularly beef, is not very compatible with a sustainable lifestyle. And some are putting all of their efforts into reducing its consumption. Which can only be a positive sign of change (yet I am a firm believer that this is only a small part of a bigger problem and vegan diets can also have profound impacts).
But does it mean we need to turn into a vegan world? No. And that wouldn’t be sustainable either.
Yes, I believe less is more and reducing our meat consumption overall to a few times a week rather than daily can only bring benefits (to our health too!). I also believe in variety, eating a bit of everything and trying new things. Aren’t humans meant to be omnivores??
So a recent article on ‘il fatto quotidiano’ (only available in Italian, sorry foreign friends!), telling people to try and eat nutria sparked my mind. If some species become pests and are deemed safe enough to eat, then why not try? If culling needs to happen then we might as well make the most of it and commercialise this kind of meats? Of course I am not saying free for all, take as much as you want. But, since culling is usually regulated, then let’s cull with more purpose.
I remember being appalled when one fellow PhD student told me his project was to find attractants for deers, to then cull them. At the time I didn’t know that ,because in Ireland there are no more natural predators, deers are a pest, a problem. Causing car accidents etc... so allowing hunting for this species with the purpose of eating and the secon benefit of keeping the pop low should be allowed. There. Not in another places, here Italy comes to my mind, where it happens anyway (illegally?), leaving wolves with less natural prey, forcing them to turn to sheep, giving wolves a bad name amongst farming communities...
So here we go- to make wild eating sustainable we should consider it in its context, but we shouldn’t rule it out. And if you cull it - try to eat it!
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