Why Eat Animals If We Could Survive On Only Plants?


This short chapter is a bit misleading. It is really just a review of the arguments made in preceding chapters rather than giving the chapter title much of treatment. Monocrop agriculture is not the way forward. Meat and animal products should be at centre stage when it comes to healthy diets and sustainable agriculture. Meatless Mondays is pure propaganda and demonisation of meat. You get the idea.

There are a couple of interesting snippets though. For instance, our authors go a little deeper into a previous argument: if the vegans had their way, they would condemn poorer countries to even more poverty. They need animals to survive. If you cut off billions of people from access to meat, you would end up making them poorer. As Rodgers and Wolf tell us “Is it ethical, then, to tell a hungry or poor person who raises meat that they should avoid meat because a well-fed Westerner [vegan] doesn’t feel it’s OK?” No it isn’t. Moreover, I think the authors are being charitable here. If the vegans got their way, it would mean starvation for tens of millions of people.

Rodgers and Wolf end the chapter with discussion of the Inuit in Northern Quebec. They show us what happens to people when they abandon traditional, whole-food, diets and replace them with modern food-based, high-carb products. The Inuit’s traditional diet is high-fat, high-protein (whales, seal, polar bears, muskoxen, birds, and fish). It’s been replaced with a standard American diet high in sugar, grains, fruits and lean protein. The result? Sixty percent of the population is overweight or obese. You might argue that perhaps they were always this fat. No chance. The decline in their tradition diet tracks neatly with the steep increase in obesity.


This is an unnecessary chapter. It fits the structure of the book though. This is the end of Part III, so the authors have given us a summary of their arguments.

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