The ethics of food and why we care

We are grateful for meat and how we produce it

January 24, 2019

People have eaten meat since the dawn of humankind. From the days of hunting and gathering in early societies to the modern, innovative culinary world, meat has been a critical part of most human diets. It’s evolved from something we need to survive to something we can elevate and enjoy for its exceptional quality and taste. The concept and logistics of food production have changed dramatically over the centuries, but the fact remains: meat is and always has been at the centre of it all.

Today, we want to offer a brief commentary on the importance of ethical meat production, the fact that eating meat can and should be considered ethical, and finally, share a fantastic article we read in The Star earlier this week.

A very important note: there is absolutely nothing wrong with being vegan or vegetarian. We love our meat (and plant-based foods as well, for that matter), but we truly respect any individual who opts for a vegan or vegetarian lifestyle. People should be free to choose how and what they eat, and we certainly don’t judge anyone for those choices. There is no shame in being a carnivore OR an herbivore, and neither group is superior to the other. So let’s move on – there’s plenty to be said about ethical farming, meat production and the choices consumers can make.

Good food should not come from privilege – but it often does

Meat provides billions of people worldwide with the nutrition they need to thrive. This gives them much-needed energy to work, play, raise families and enjoy their lives. It’s worth noting that choosing to NOT eat meat is a privilege, as it means you live in a society where surviving on a plant-based lifestyle is possible. This is relatively easy in North America and many other developed nations, but less possible elsewhere. In many regions, meat is essential to survival. As Stewart Skinner asserts, “The only inhumane condition surrounding food is hunger. Hunger causes pain to those who experience it and meat is an essential part of fighting hunger around the world.1

We are grateful for meat. We also care about how we produce it.

Eating ethically-produced meat becomes a privilege when other meat products are cheaper and more accessible. At VG, we strive to bridge that gap and bring ethical, sustainable, delicious local meats to as many people as possible. Good food shouldn’t be for some people; it should be for everyone.

We believe in offering an exceptional product at the best possible value. This doesn’t mean we offer a cheap product, necessarily, because cheap cannot always equate to ethical. The bottom line is this: we treat our animals well, we are passionate about environmental sustainability, and we care about doing things the right way – not the cheap or easy way. To us, value means creating an exceptional product with the least environmental impact while staying within our moral and ethical believes, and offering that product at the best price we can offer. It’s not always easy, but it’s something we’re committed to.

A fantastic read from The Star

Eating meat is is a normal, healthy and traditional part of society, and we are grateful that it is available to us. We feel good about providing nutritious, nourishing protein to consumers and their families, and to serve it in our own homes.

The bottom line is this: every species is part of an evolutionary circle of life, and we can take steps to produce meat in an ethical, sustainable manner that we are proud of. The article that sparked a lot of conversation and inspired this blog post is available here, on The Toronto Star’s website. Please take a few minutes to read it – it’s an important subject and a great piece!

Thanks as always for reading and for caring about where your meat comes from. We’d love to hear from you in the comments on Facebook!