Vegan Pc - again

Michael Miller & Ute Bohnsack burrenag at
Sun Apr 19 09:13:06 EDT 1998

Lee, I'm afraid you are mistaken where it comes to the space needed to feed
vegans/vegetarians versus 'omnivores'. Unfortunately a very big proportion
of the domestic
animals in the western world do not graze on native grasses or browse
trees/scrub - in fact, a lot of them never ever see so much as a blade of
grass; they are kept indoors and fed huge amounts of concentrates, grains,
soybeans etc.
which are grown in large-scale intensive tillage plots. I don't have up to
date figures but I saw figures in the early eighties which stated that
"four-fifth of Swiss cows 'graze' in the Third World", i.e. they were fed
on imported concentrates. Also think of the huge areas of rain-forest
cleared in the Amazon region to create grazing land for cattle to supply
beef burgers to the US. 
If the grains/legumes were eaten directly by humans it would take a lot
less space to feed them all.
Obviously it's a different story if we are talking about organic integrated
/ PC systems where animals are part of the nutrient cycle on a holding and
graze/browse areas that cannot be put to a use which would directly feed
Personally I was a vegetarian for 12 years. I now eat meat maybe once a
month (home-butchered goat kid or the odd chicken and home-butchered
venison or pork which the neighbours kindly supply at times). 
What I'm trying to say is that there are *huge* differences in terms of
production systems. 

I wholeheartedly agree with your other post "re: vegan permaculture".

Greetings from Ireland,

: From: Lee Flier <lflier at>
: To: permaculture at
: Subject: RE: Vegan Pc - again
: Date: 19 April 1998 07:45
[big snip]
.....  So I guess what I'm saying is that a
: community can support some number of vegans or vegetarians, but trying to
: form a whole community around veganism would, IMO, be ultimately a
:  Just the amount of land that would have to be used up to grow enough
: grains and legumes to support a lot of vegetarians, could be a problem.
: Whereas eating ruminants who graze on native grasses or tree browse
: pose the same problem.  So again there is something of an impasse when
: try to incorporate veganism into PC... 
: = Lee =
: Lee A Flier
: lflier at
: Atlanta and Ellijay, Georgia, U.S.A.

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