I’m going to do an experiment.
I’m a born-and-bred, beef-farmer’s-daughter, eat-steak-rare, proud-to-be meat eater. Always have been. Some women like chocolate on Valentine’s Day, I’d rather have bacon. (Yes, bacon in a heart-shaped box would be nice.)
But, I got to thinking, what kind of personal challenge would it be to go a week without meat? Could I do it? What would it be like? During my stint in Wisconsin, I’d go a day or two without eating meat and never think about it. That was partially because meat wasn’t offered; it wasn’t available. Now, I’m back on campus where meat products abound and my self-control will have to be significantly higher.
But, if you think about it, it’s an interestingly new view on the food system. While my meals are normally based around a meat products and what “goes with” it, for the next week (or however long I last, since I’m not sure I can make it a week) they’ll be more…I don’t know. I can’t explain it.
So, either way, I’m starting a week-long experiment. This experiment, if it’s a success, will open my eyes to a lot of the not-so-appreciated farmers out there. I know I’ll eat a lot of salad; do I ever bother to thank lettuce farmers? What about spinach growers? I’m so quick to #thankafarmer for beef and bacon and chicken on Twitter, but when’s the last time I thought about thanking cucumber growers?
See, while I’m doing this as a “just because,” I’m finding there’s opportunity in this fun self-challenge. I’ll gain a new appreciation for the food I eat, and a new appreciation for the farmers I usually forget about.
In closing: thank you, meat producers. I’m already excited to join the ranks of your consumers once again, and can guarantee that I probably won’t last the full week. And to the veggie, grain, and fruit growers (and dairymen…I’m still doing dairy!) out there who will provide a large portion of my nourishment, thanks! I look forward to gaining a relationship with you.
To view the continuing adventures of my week-long stint as a vegetarian, see my next post: Observations From My First Two Days.