Over 1000 scientists have signed a declaration asserting the importance of animal agriculture in protest of plant-based proselytizing.
Meat and dairy products are ancient food sources, part of the human diet since cave renderings. Human history is interwoven with animal husbandry as sustainer and driving force, from the fermented dairy cultures of Mongolia to the nomadic sheep grazers of the Middle East to the cattle drives that opened up the American West. Vegetarianism is a new arrival, but it has moralization and catastrophizing to convince you.
The Dublin Declaration counters villainization of ranching and animal systems. These arts, it claims, are “too precious to society to become victim of simplification, reduction or zealotry.”
“These systems must continue to be embedded in and have broad approval of society.”
The declaration is accompanied by nine new research papers published in Animal Frontiers.
“Livestock-derived foods provide a variety of essential nutrients and other health-promoting compounds, many of which are lacking in diets even among those populations with higher incomes,” states the document.
Signatories claim vulnerable populations are especially endangered by animal product bans. “Well-resourced individuals may be able to achieve adequate diets while heavily restricting meat, dairy and eggs. However, this approach should not be recommended for general populations.”
The document calls out research that claimed red meat is responsible for 896,000 deaths worldwide. They say the science is flawed; when meat is eaten as part of an overall healthy diet the harmful associations disappear.
But more serious, signers claim the science is compromised. “Regrettably, the scientific discussion on the potential associations between meat and noncommunicable diseases is often no longer a transparent assessment of the evidence but is affected by agendas, including vested interests and ideologies.”
Animal Frontiers is the official science research journal of four respected professional animal science societies in the United States, Canada, and Europe. The Dublin Declaration of Scientists on the Societal Role of Livestock can be read in full here.