There are those who are passionate about fighting Monsanto, GMO's, legislation against raw milk farmers and the like. I am not one of those people. At least not in the constantly research, march in protest and wave angry hands. It's just not me.
You won't see RTT Facebook page filled with repostings of why we should always eat organically, avoid grain-fed animals at all cost, or the demise of pesticides dooming our children's children's future.
However, this doesn't mean I don't have strong convictions or morals about any or all of the above. I do believe in eating grass-fed cattle and pastured chicken, because we are stewards of this earth and eating opposite goes against the very nature of the Garden. You can read more on my food ideologies.
Essentially, eating is as much about communing with people eating good food as it is about knowing the food was raised well. Eating ethically is being in rhythm with the relationships given to us by God. It's taking only my share (something I'm still working out), and not wasting it. It's in the tending the soil to the raising of the animal to the eating of the harvest.
God gave Adam & Eve to be stewards of creation. I liken it to the image in Return of the King when Gandalf reminds Denethor of his role as steward to the King, not the King himself. To steward means to care for, protect, look to the best interest of.
If our jobs as humans is to steward creation; then, by choosing to eat, we should keep that in mind. We should be asking ourselves if the place in which we are purchasing our food supports both the land, the farmer, the producer, the seller?
Could I get a better deal at a super Wal-Mart for my food? Probably so, but what are the ethics involved in the treatment of their employees? How do they do business with the seller of the goods?
Can I get more meat for a less price, although the animals life was not all that it could have been?
The dilemma is when we know more, it's harder to ignore the truths behind what it is we are buying into. The other dilemma is we are not all on an equal paying field. It would seem that the powers that be give more money to the GMOs and less to the small farm, which inevitably costs more money in the short term, or at least at the check-out.
For me, eating ethically is so dependent on eating in season & locally as much as I can. The reason being is it takes me back to Eden, where relationship was right and life wasn't taken for granted. I liken it to us buying our cow for the year.
When the butcher calls to see how I want the beef cut, she will ask, "how many roasts? how many steaks?" I've become accustomed to what comes from the chuck and what comes from the rib, etc. I also know that there is only one flank and one brisket in 1/2 a cow. However, have you noticed how many recipes call for flank or brisket?
By ordering our cow, I develop this relationship of dependency and thankfulness.
Dependency, because I am only allotted this one prized cut, unlike the grocery store where it seemingly comes in endless supply. Thankfulness, because I am given this gift from this one animal to partake and provide for my family.
What does eating ethically look like to you? What does it mean and how does it play out in your home?