Most non-dairy cheese is made from soy products, which require massive tracts of land growing soy as a monocrop, depleting the soil and requiring more weed and pest sprays. This means corporate power, mass-production and the concerns over-use of soy entails.
In contrast, sustainably ranched dairies provide humane care, responsible feed and pasture use, as well as converting methane from feces (a green house gas) into electricity. Animals are a crucial element in a self-sustaining, eco-friendly farm.
I think soy is one of the most greenwashed products that we have on the market. Everyone loves soy for some reason but I don’t think that they understand how much goes into growing and harvesting it.
Dairy uses far more resources than soy does. Imagine all of the resources that go into raising soybeans. Imagine the vast fields of monoculture crops growing grains and hay. Now imagine all of those resources and monoculture crops being wasted because the crops are being fed to cows instead of being fed directly to people.
Animal agriculture also create more methane and manure than the environment can handle.
The United Nations has examined the issue, and has said:
Cattle-rearing generates more global warming greenhouse gases, as measured in CO2 equivalent, than transportation . . . Livestock now use 30 per cent of the earth’s entire land surface, mostly permanent pasture but also including 33 per cent of the global arable land used to producing feed for livestock, the report notes. As forests are cleared to create new pastures, it is a major driver of deforestation, especially in Latin America where, for example, some 70 per cent of former forests in the Amazon have been turned over to grazing . . . The livestock business is among the most damaging sectors to the earth’s increasingly scarce water resources, contributing among other things to water pollution from animal wastes, antibiotics and hormones, chemicals from tanneries, fertilizers and the pesticides used to spray feed crops.
Pasture-fed cows are not the answer, because it requires even more land and than factory farming and is a leading cause of rainforest deforestation. Factory farming began not because farmers are sadists, but because it’s the only way to feed animal products to billions of people. Raising animals on pasture is less efficient than factory farming and much less efficient than veganism.
The Democratic Underground article compares monoculture with small subsistence farmers, not dairy farmers. The Cowgirl Creamery website is a self-serving commercial website.
The solution is veganism.
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