Friday, September 20, 2013

My Ethical Food Disclaimer


Anyone who reads this page knows something about me: I am an amateur. I don't cook or write for a living, I get most of my inspiration web surfing, and I don't want to spend all my time in the kitchen (read: lazy). At the same time, I try to eat whole foods, limit sugar, and keep the carbs to a minimum. Consequently, I frequently browse other more well managed sites like nomnompaleo.com, and Mark's Daily Apple, and quite often run into rants in one place or another.

Rants designed to promote eating grass fed, organic, locally sourced, free range EVERYTHING. I stumble across links with torture scenes worthy of PETA, and guilt trips for buying a conventionally raised chicken.

I get it. I know that feed lots are evil, and laying hens are abused. I know, and I care. I wish I could change it. (If you are unfamiliar with the subject of animal cruelty in the food industry, educate yourself here.)

But the bottom line is, I can't. I am an average upper-lower class American mom with finite funds and more than one priority. I cannot afford to feed a family of five exclusively out of Whole Foods and still expect to keep a roof over our heads. I can buy 2 dozen brown organic AWESOME eggs, or I can buy 5 dozen conventional white ones. For me that is no contest. Yes, the brown eggs taste phenomenal, and bite of cruelty free meat I have ever eaten has been without compare. That doesn't change the fact that it is out of my budget.

I have to make a choice. I can feed my family mountains processed crap from the freezer section and lots of boxes labeled 'helper', or I can give them skimpy portions of local, organic, free rage grass fed eggs and beef. Or there is option three: somewhere in the middle, with healthy sized plates of the best meats and vegetables I can manage. I can't help the fact that those meals will include animal antibiotics or a chicken in a cramped box.

This isn't to say that the food industry doesn't need to change, a lot. Quite frankly the infrastructure of most major American industries need a major overhaul. But my having my kids starve is not a price I am willing to pay for that change. (Wanna help make change? Start here.)