I am not a vegan, but I joined a vegan Facebook group of my hometown few months back, because I am interested in the topic, and have begun to cook more and more vegan food – yet not ready to fully take the leap. So let’s just say I joined the group to get some tips and educate myself about the topic. So far so good, people were sharing grocery shopping and restaurant tips of the city, and I was actually getting a lot out of the group. Until yesterday.
Yesterday someone posted an interesting article about the harms of avocado farming: how much water growing them consumes (10x more than tomatoes) and how they dry up drinking water sources of some countries and how it’s all used as a political game… I never was the biggest fan of avocadoes, bought maybe one or two a month, but after reading the hard facts on the topic, I decided not to buy avocadoes again. I expected similar reactions from the group of vegans assumably concerned about such topics.
I am a vegetarian who eats meat maybe twice a year. I also occasionally buy some cantaloupe melon which is imported from somewhere on the other side of the globe. I love some good italian hard cheese. In conclusion, I’m not someone, who could judge other people‘s habits. Yet somehow I couldn’t help but getting annoyed about the reactions of the people in the vegan group. It went something like this:
„I buy only organic avocadoes, so it’s okay“
„I buy only european avocadoes, so it’s okay“
„OK, so avocadoes are bad for the environment. I will still keep on eating them.“ (this one’s a direct translation)
“I wonder what kind of rage would rise, if someone wrote in public: „OK, so meat production is bad for the environment, but I will still keep on eating meat.“”
Questions kept coming to my mind..
Do some people choose to become vegan only because of the animal rights, and not for the environment?
If someone shouts out vegan values, is this person still allowed to eat fruit imported from far away, a fruit that dries up the land, and feel guilt-free about it?
Am I on the wrong path, when I mostly concentrate on waste and the transportation: how can I get rid of the waste my consumption leaves behind – also the packaging, and how far did it have to travel to get into my shopping basket?
Are these matters of opinion, or is there a direct answer to HOW can we consume in a responsible way?
Are we all just picking the guidelines, that fit our personal values and lifestyles the best, and then judge others, when they choose differently?
Where goes the line for too little too late, or do we all have to go all in?
“There are for sure vegans, who have been to Bali, or Primark. On the other hand, there are as well people, who eat meat but never fly anywhere.”
I look up to people, who chose to become vegan and always thought to myself they have the purest conciense, the strongest self-discipline and the most unharming consumption. In the group I saw myself like the big bad vegetarian wolf in a disguise desperately trying to blend in in the herd of vegan sheep, even though I was someone who still ate cheese, and an occasional (more like annual) piece of meat.
Putting the blame game and the questions aside, at the end of the day we’re all human. Human with cravings, likes and unlikes. As the need for an aggressive chance of lifestyle is urgent, perhaps the smallest problem is a vegan, who eats an avocado from time to time. The problem is ignorance, denial and excuses.
Maybe the general problem is everyone together, and all of our choices. We’re all doing choices, that are part of the environmental problems. There are for sure vegans, who have been to Bali, or Primark. On the other hand, there are as well people, who eat meat but never fly anywhere.
We all need to make responsible choices and think reasonably.
It’s human not to be ready give up on all of the things we like, but denying the fact that an overwhelming avocado consumption in Europe is part of the problem is definitely the wrong way to think. Therefore I will keep away from the vegan group for now. Hmm.. I wonder what kind of rage would rise, if someone wrote in public: „OK, so meat production is bad for the environment, but I will still keep on eating meat.“