Varadkar - "I am trying to eat less meat both for health reasons and for reasons of climate change"

Polybius

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Varadkar - "I am trying to eat less meat both for health reasons and for reasons of climate change"

This is a bizarre and irresponsible comment for a Taoiseach to make. Irish agriculture is heavily based upon meat production. We produce enough beef for 30 million people and export across the world. Why would the Taoiseach promote eating less meat when it's not in the interests of the country? Also this seems somewhat hypocritical for a Fine Gael leader given that the main reason the Fine Gael party was founded in 1933 was to represent the interests of cattle ranchers.

It's not unhealthy to eat meat. Sugar is the biggest danger in the modern western diet. It's fashionable to blame meat for climate change but eating locally produced meat is better for the environment than eating avocados and quinoa imported from thousands of miles away.

If Varadkar wants to live in the Dublin hipster liberal bubble that's fine. But he should realise that there's an Ireland beyond drinking in Pantibar, going to Kylie concerts and fawning over Justin Trudeau. Most Irish people do not have the huge disposable income and guaranteed pension of Varadkar. Many Irish people need money to pay for their kids and their mortgages. Many rely on jobs in meat production and exports. Time for Varadkar to grow up and behave like a leader.

Varadkar to reduce carbon footprint - FarmIreland.ie

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cricket

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This is a bizarre and irresponsible comment for a Taoiseach to make. Irish agriculture is heavily based upon meat production. We produce enough beef for 30 million people and export across the world. Why would the Taoiseach promote eating less meat when it's not in the interests of the country? Also this seems somewhat hypocritical for a Fine Gael leader given that the main reason the Fine Gael party was founded in 1933 was to represent the interests of cattle ranchers.

It's not unhealthy to eat meat. Sugar is the biggest danger in the modern western diet. It's fashionable to blame meat for climate change but eating locally produced meat is better for the environment than eating avocados and quinoa imported from thousands of miles away.

If Varadkar wants to live in the Dublin hipster liberal bubble that's fine. But he should realise that there's an Ireland beyond drinking in Pantibar, going to Kylie concerts and fawning over Justin Trudeau. Most Irish people do not have the huge disposable income and guaranteed pension of Varadkar. Many Irish people need money to pay for their kids and their mortgages. Many rely on jobs in meat production and exports. Time for Varadkar to grow up and behave like a leader.

Varadkar to reduce carbon footprint - FarmIreland.ie

View attachment 1566
What a stupid post, he's perfectly entitled to decide what he wants and does not want to eat.
If it's any consolation, you're not on your own :

Taoiseach's comments on meat could impact agri business, says Fitzmaurice | BreakingNews.ie



A "Babe, Ned O'Keefe " moment by Fitzmaurice :laugh:
 

Sync

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You don't know how much he's been eating. Moderate input of meat is of course fine. It's part of a balanced diet. If he's eating too much, reducing it makes sense.

I don't think he's saying "And then I substitute my steak with 4 Crunchies".

Your assessment of avocados producing more CO2 than meat doesn't hold up either (Although it's obviously high).
Giving up beef will reduce carbon footprint more than cars, says expert | Environment | The Guardian
Revealed: the enormous carbon footprint of eating avocado | London Evening Standard


And of course: It's perfectly possible (Easier in some cases) to put a food plan on a budget involving veggies over meat.

So fact free muck from you Polybius. But it's better constructed fact free muck than your normal product.

D-. Big improvement from you.
 

Schuhart

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This is a bizarre and irresponsible comment for a Taoiseach to make. Irish agriculture is heavily based upon meat production. We produce enough beef for 30 million people and export across the world. Why would the Taoiseach promote eating less meat when it's not in the interests of the country?
What's not in the interests of the country is the over-concentration in the production of a few products for a few destinations.

"Export across the world" is misleading. Half our beef exports go to the UK; Tesco alone accounts for something like 10% of our exports.

You might have missed some other stories, which make this statement more explicable.
Brexit and Irish beef farms - whats the potential impact? - Agriland.ie

The Irish beef industry is dependent on exports to stay afloat. This comes as only 10% of all beef cattle slaughtered in Ireland are consumed domestically; the remaining 90% are exported.

Just under 50% of all beef exported from Ireland in 2016 was destined for the UK, 40% went to the rest of Europe and the remainder (approximately 10%) was shipped to non-European markets.

<...>if the UK exits the common market and is subjected to World Trade Organisation (WTO) tariffs.<...> Across all types of Irish beef, the tariff rate would sit closer to 70%. At this rate, he said, the demand for Irish beef would evaporate <...>
The concentration on beef and dairy means that we've a food security problem. Big need for change in Irish agriculture - starting with a big change in mindset. Some of these issues have been aired here:

Irish food security post Brexit
 

Polybius

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What's not in the interests of the country is the over-concentration in the production of a few products for a few destinations.

"Export across the world" is misleading. Half our beef exports go to the UK; Tesco alone accounts for something like 10% of our exports.

You might have missed some other stories, which make this statement more explicable.The concentration on beef and dairy means that we've a food security problem. Big need for change in Irish agriculture - starting with a big change in mindset. Some of these issues have been aired here:

Irish food security post Brexit
It's the politicians and the EU who directed Irish farmers into beef and dairy through CAP payments. It's impossible to tell farmers after decades of CAP that they should give up low intensity cattle grazing and switch to high intensity lettuce farming.
 

Schuhart

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It's the politicians and the EU who directed Irish farmers into beef and dairy through CAP payments. It's impossible to tell farmers after decades of CAP that they should give up low intensity cattle grazing and switch to high intensity lettuce farming.
Farmers were not passive recipients of CAP largesse. They've actively campaigned to influence the destination of public funding. So I don't buy your victim line.

Their current production is too concentrated. Change is inevitable. I'd say it was probably impossible to tell thatchers that they'd have to get into tiling if they wanted to stay in the roofing game.

Time for the so-called "family" hobby farmers to adapt or leave the sector.
 

firefly123

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This is a bizarre and irresponsible comment for a Taoiseach to make. Irish agriculture is heavily based upon meat production. We produce enough beef for 30 million people and export across the world. Why would the Taoiseach promote eating less meat when it's not in the interests of the country? Also this seems somewhat hypocritical for a Fine Gael leader given that the main reason the Fine Gael party was founded in 1933 was to represent the interests of cattle ranchers.

It's not unhealthy to eat meat. Sugar is the biggest danger in the modern western diet. It's fashionable to blame meat for climate change but eating locally produced meat is better for the environment than eating avocados and quinoa imported from thousands of miles away.

If Varadkar wants to live in the Dublin hipster liberal bubble that's fine. But he should realise that there's an Ireland beyond drinking in Pantibar, going to Kylie concerts and fawning over Justin Trudeau. Most Irish people do not have the huge disposable income and guaranteed pension of Varadkar. Many Irish people need money to pay for their kids and their mortgages. Many rely on jobs in meat production and exports. Time for Varadkar to grow up and behave like a leader.

Varadkar to reduce carbon footprint - FarmIreland.ie

View attachment 1566
Jaysus kylie is fierce small isn't she?
 

Polybius

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Farmers were not passive recipients of CAP largesse. They've actively campaigned to influence the destination of public funding. So I don't buy your victim line.

Their current production is too concentrated. Change is inevitable. I'd say it was probably impossible to tell thatchers that they'd have to get into tiling if they wanted to stay in the roofing game.

Time for the so-called "family" hobby farmers to adapt or leave the sector.
I'm not saying they're victims. I'm saying it's the politicians who negotiated these agreements. The Irish politicians designed CAP payments to benefit low intensity cattle grazers and therefore disincentivise fruit, vegetable and crop production. This cannot be undone anytime soon. Beef production will remain a key part of Irish agriculture for decades to come regardless of Leo's attempts to virtue signal to the Dublin media.
 
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Lagertha

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I don't like Varadker and I disagree with much of what he spouts, but he has a point on this issue. I eat fish but I don't eat meat or poultry, that's my choice and I wouldn't try to force that choice on anyone else. The reality is that too many people eat too much meat and trying to justify an eating an unhealthy amount of meat under the guise of supporting the farming industry in Ireland is just ridiculous. We know that too much red meat is bad for us, we know that too many animals are being produced for the food market and that it's bad for the global environment. We can't blame the farming industry worldwide for global warming but it is a contributing factor. There are still a lot of people eating meat 3 times a day 7 days a week and that needs to stop, for health reasons, for ethical reasons and for practical reasons.
 

Sync

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I'm not saying they're victims. I'm saying it's the politicians who negotiated these agreements. The Irish politicians designed CAP payments to benefit low intensity cattle grazers and therefore disincentive fruit, vegetable and crop production. This cannot be undone anytime soon. Beef production will remain a key part of Irish agriculture for decades to come regardless of Leo's attempts to virtue signal to the Dublin media.
But why decades? I think you're both right to a degree: We, through CAP, are funding the provision of a service by the farmers. If we, through our government, decide we want to alter the terms of that service, why is that decades? If the best thing for instance is to move to chickens over cows (Far less co2 per KG, healthier food type), why does that take decades?

This is what management is. Identify the end goal. Identify the best path to that goal. Execute. If the farmers in question don't want to go along that path, that's absolutely their prerogative. But that's not a prerogative that should be state funded.
 

freewillie

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I don't like Varadker and I disagree with much of what he spouts, but he has a point on this issue. I eat fish but I don't eat meat or poultry, that's my choice and I wouldn't try to force that choice on anyone else. The reality is that too many people eat too much meat and trying to justify an eating an unhealthy amount of meat under the guise of supporting the farming industry in Ireland is just ridiculous. We know that too much red meat is bad for us, we know that too many animals are being produced for the food market and that it's bad for the global environment. We can't blame the farming industry worldwide for global warming but it is a contributing factor. There are still a lot of people eating meat 3 times a day 7 days a week and that needs to stop, for health reasons, for ethical reasons and for practical reasons.
You eat what you want but dont tell the rest of us what we should eat
 

SPN

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This is a bizarre and irresponsible comment for a Taoiseach to make.
Nope.

This here is a very effective conversation starter.



Irish agriculture is heavily based upon meat production.
And that's a major problem.



We produce enough beef for 30 million people and export across the world.
We need to consider how sustainable this market is, given the health and environmental problems caused by meat production.

It takes 10 calories of feed to produce one calorie of meat.

Why not use the 10 calories of feed to feed 10 times more people, or reduce the amount of land required to feed the population by 90%.

All the wins.


Why would the Taoiseach promote eating less meat when it's not in the interests of the country?
It surely is in the interests of the country to reduce environmental damage, and improve the health of the population.



Also this seems somewhat hypocritical for a Fine Gael leader given that the main reason the Fine Gael party was founded in 1933 was to represent the interests of cattle ranchers.
The cattle ranchers are all about turning their assets into income.

Cattle farming might have been the way to go in the past, it is very much the wrong way to go today - as many farmers will tell you.



It's not unhealthy to eat meat.
There are many medical studies which would disagree with this herer conclusion.



Sugar is the biggest danger in the modern western diet.
Correct.



It's fashionable to blame meat for climate change
Nope.

Science tells us that meat production is a significant environmental problem.



but eating locally produced meat is better for the environment than eating avocados and quinoa imported from thousands of miles away.
And eating locally produced vegetables, preferably organic, is orders of magnitude better again.



If Varadkar wants to live in the Dublin hipster liberal bubble that's fine. But he should realise that there's an Ireland beyond drinking in Pantibar, going to Kylie concerts and fawning over Justin Trudeau. Most Irish people do not have the huge disposable income and guaranteed pension of Varadkar.
Piffle and balderdash.

Adds nothing to your argument



Many Irish people need money to pay for their kids and their mortgages. Many rely on jobs in meat production and exports.
Exactly.

Just like 300,000 people depended on a bank lending bubble back in the mid noughties.

We need to not make that mistake again.



Time for Varadkar to grow up and behave like a leader.
This announcement indicates that he is very much growing into that there role.
 

SPN

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It's the politicians and the EU who directed Irish farmers into beef and dairy through CAP payments. It's impossible to tell farmers after decades of CAP that they should give up low intensity cattle grazing and switch to high intensity lettuce farming.
Low intensity cattle grazing is a loss making enterprise that only exists because of the EU supports.

As many have pointed out in the recent debates on how we should address the climate change problem, it can be more profitable for suckler farmers to put their low quality land into forestry and only use the high quality land for animals.

We are facing massive fines for not meeting our climate change targets, not to mention the massive costs we face dealing with the damage caused by major weather events that are resulting from climate change.

Use this dead money to pay the farmers to help prevent these here problems.

Less hardship, less emissions, more money in the arsé pocket.

All the wins.
 

Lagertha

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You eat what you want but dont tell the rest of us what we should eat
If you'd actually read my post you would have read that I said ''I wouldn't try to force my choices on anyone else'', feel free to carry on with the pointless ill informed rant though.
 


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